Calming River- Jejune / For Edward

Jejune / For Edward is the a new double A single from UK alt-folk songwriter Calming River (Joshua Malcolm). Available to stream now, this is the second single from Calming River’s upcoming album and features the vocals of Danish songwriter Own Road (Simon Skjødt Jensen). A collaboration born by both artists being affiliated with Copenhagen label Dendron Records.

‘For Edward’ lyrics are based on the late psychologist Edward S. Reed, whose brilliant 1996 release ‘Encountering The World’ includes Bertolt Brecht’s 1932 Nazi-foreboding poem ‘In Praise of Doubt’ (the line “The thoughtless who never doubt // Meet the thoughtful who never act” provided the inspiration to the song.). Reed was a prodigious, daring and unconventional psychologist, who passed too early — the track is an ode to him.

Both tracks feature delicate and tender melodies paired with almost hushed vocals making the combined single feel almost like a meditation. You find yourself still, simply taking in the melody and lyrics. Admittedly, this isn’t a style of music I’d usually listen to but I’ve enjoyed the calm, melancholy vibe – especially with Jejune. It’s almost easier to think of this as an experience rather than a song.

The keys in Jejune almost feel hopeful, combined with what sounds like the whisper of a panpipe in the instrumentals and the lovely but delicate vocal, the song evokes a range of emotions throughout.

The stunning piano combined with the gut-wrenching violin are a heart -breaking combination in ‘For Edward’ and are a real compliment to the lyrics. They almost bring a feeling of grief to the listener. There is also some, delicate, elegant string work in there that really elevates. The two singles together are a great compliment to one another and really demonstrate a range in the artists talent.