Michael Clark takes a look at Rachel Sermanni’s debut album and accompanying shorts by Quintana Films

Rating: 4/5

Up-and-coming Glasgow-based film company Quintana Films has paired up with young Scottish folk act Rachel Sermanni to create a twelve-piece set of short films to accompany the release of her new debut album, Under Mountains, released on September 17th, 2012. Having recently played the ‘BBC Introducing…’ stage at Reading and having performed on the Vic Galloway show at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe, the singer-songwriter has stunned audiences time and time again with her multi-instrumental talents, smooth vocal delivery and understated yet emotive lyrics, cultivating a dedicated fanbase.

Her new debut album Under Mountains, wonderfully produced by Ian Grimble of the organisation Communion, deserves no less than rapturous praise from the music press and – following prolonged interactions with Quintana Films, who have previously worked on music videos with popular Edinburgh dance trio Discopolis, Sermanni sought to represent each of the tracks from Under Mountains in innovative and creative ways. Quintana Films directors Lorn MacDonald and Caitlin Delves worked hard to accurately reflect the lyrical nuances of each song and the thematic links which bind the album so effectively in these twelve shorts, having previously created and produced the video to leading single from the album, Waltz, as seen above.

Album opener Breathe Easy balances a mysterious instrumental atmosphere with a gentle vocal lullaby as Sermanni sings “We’ll swim/Knowing rain can’t touch us/We’ll swim/Knowing they can’t touch us.”

The second track Bones follows in a different direction, a dark, building melody with soaring violin accompaniment. In this quite creepy short, Quintana Films seem to represent the lyrical contrast between the softness and personal beauty of the soul and the ravenous desire of the animal instinct, a distinction which permeates the lyric. “Don’t cheat, says the soul/It’s just meat on his bones.”

Ever Since the Chocolate sees Sermanni suggest a newfound sense of wonder and happiness through the simple but effective metaphor of munching down on a little bit o’ chocolate. Note the reversed guitar and vocal parts accompanied by the reversed video footage, and the careful understated instrumentation.

The Fog shares a similarly dark edge to its infectious chorus as Sermanni conveys an impressive vocal range, once again managing to thoroughly unsettle you before you can even really put your finger on why.

Hopefully this is just a taste of the talents that Rachel Sermanni has to offer. If her work with Quintana Films is anything to go by, Sermanni is sure to achieve nothing but success and expand her already devoted fanbase with the release of her first album, Under Mountains.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Michael Clark

 

Keep an eye out as Quintana Films release additional shorts via Clash Music at www.clashmusic.com

Watch more music videos and comedy skits from Quintana Films at – www.quintanafilms.com

Listen to more of Rachel Sermanni at www.rachelsermanni.net

Image by The Queen’s Hall.