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Nadja - Paradox Incubate 25-09-14

Consouling Sounds 8,5/10

At Incubate (read full review), a festival in Tilburg (NL) there's always time for a little stunt. This year Aidan Baker was a resident for the entire week, playing solo performances and concerts with Caudal, Thisquietarmy, Uochi Toki and obviously Nadja. Along with the Incubate organisation, the Belgian label Consouling Sounds decided to make it extra special. The Nadja concert on monday was recorded live and released on 180g vinyl + cd the following saturday, only five days later. It's limited to 300 copies and we bought the very first one. Please forgive us for bragging.


But how does it sound?


It seems that Aidan and Leah went full force for this fourty minute lasting concert. The typical (bowed) guitar drones and bass are being accompanied by very well programmed drums and Aidan's vocals. The first part reminds me of the Desire in Uneasiness album, but with vocals. The fact that Aidan Baker is not the best singer in the world doesn't even matter. His hesitant, dreamy voice sounds a litlle like Jesu and fits pretty well in this piece.


Part two is even more atmospheric, mainly because it's an instrumental piece. The drums set in very late, resulting in a long drone ambient track that only becomes a little heavier after ten minutes or so. This seems the be the part where Nadja forgot they were recording a live album and just played an excellent concert. This really is the best part of the recording, proving instantly why Nadja is a resident at the top of the drone ambient scene.


At the end, after the audience stops applauding, Aidan thanks Consouling Sounds and mentions that the live recording will be available on Saturday. It's actually highly surprising that the label didn't cut this part but it does make the recording unique. It adds the feel of a live concert since the production is so well done that you can't really hear a difference between this album and a Nadja studio album.


So in all this is an excellent recording and an extraordinary stunt. Paradox Incubate 15-09-14 is an instant collectors item for all Nadja fans. Worth mentioning is the interesting artwork by Belgian artist Stefan Serneels and the lovely smell of very, very fresh vinyl...