Christina Vantzou – No2 by Ben Spencer

Rating: 4.5/5
Distributor/ Label: Kranky Release
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Released: 2014
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Christina Vantzou

christina vantzou






Album Track listing

1. Anna Mae
2. Going Backwards to Recover That Which Was Left Behind
3. Brain Fog
4. Strange Symptoms
5. Vancouver Island Quartet
6. Sister
7. VHS
8. Arp
9. Little Darlinʼ Seize the Sun
10. Vostok
11. The Magic of the Autodidact


Every now and then there are some albums that are so engrossing they demand that you stop whatever it is you’re doing at the time and allow yourself to become pulled into their world. Christina Vantzou’s second album No2 is one of those albums that has just that effect on you. Having carefully crafted this record over a four year period and through combining her efforts Minna Choi at Tiny Telephone studios in San Francisco, the eagerly awaited follow up to her debut is ready to reveal the next step in Christina’s musical career.

Opening with the mesmerizing violins of ‘Anna Mae’ the light brushes of keys weaves into the mix and provides an enticing prelude to the record.

Personal favourite, ‘Going Backwards To Recover What Was Left Behind’ plays out with a sombre sounding piano and elegant violins that propel onto a cinematic platform that wouldn’t sound out of place on any decent film soundtrack.

‘Brain Fog’ plays out with a thick array of icy images racing across your mind and its cold chill is one that is guaranteed to hook you in and leave you suspended in a trance like state up until its final moments.

The seamless flow of the music makes it difficult to decipher where one track ends and another begins but it certainly makes the record feel cohesive, from the otherworldly tenderness of ‘Vancouver Island Quartet’ with its choir section to the lucid textures of ‘VHS’.

‘The Magic of Autodidact’ shimmers with radiance within its opening moments as the tranquil pace pulls you along for one final ride as the rich landscapes passes through like a cool breeze before dispersing into its ambient departure.

What was great about this album was how immersive it became right from the offset. From the song composition to the atmospheric trails it leaves behind it is a piece of music that is not only worth your engaging with but one that will keep you going back time and time again on a near flawless voyage into Christina Vantzou’s art.

Review by Ben Spencer