The abandoned island settlement of Piramida was the inspiration for Efterklang's fourth release. In 2010, the Danish trio saw photos of the decaying mining town and within a year the band ventured near the arctic circle to visit the site. Bringing recording equipment with them, the group captured the sounds of the deserted town. Returning to their music studio in Berlin, the recordings were stripped down and manipulated to be used for rhythms and melodies. The album opens with the sounds of metal spikes that were protruding from a large oil drum being struck ("Hollow Mountain"). The hollow, vibraphone-like sounds on "Told To Be Fine" are actually ornate glass lamps being hit. The muffled percussion that opens "Dreams Today" is simply the sound of one of the boys running across a walkway. And the slightly out-of-tune piano sound? Well, it really is a piano. It comes from a baby grand piano that the band found still sitting on stage in the ornate, yet neglected 400-seat concert hall. All of this, combined with guest artists on drums and violin, a brass orchestra, and a girls choir along with the band's own electronics, bass, and vocals adds up to moody, quiet rock. Piramida's desolation permeates this pretty piece. Rebecca Ruth

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