Agnes Obel: Stretch Your Eyes (PIAS)

Impressively noirish new single from chamber pop singer songwirter

Released Mar 21st, 2017 via PIAS / By Jethro West
Agnes Obel: Stretch Your Eyes (PIAS) The fall of 2016 brought us Agnes Obel’s third studio album, Citizen of Glass. Now, spring of 2017 adds the record's opening track, ‘Stretch Your Eyes’, to a resplendent repertoire of singles.

The Danish-born and now Berlin-based artist explains of Citizen of Glass that she wanted to capture the German concept of the gläserner bürger - ‘the glass citizen’ - that bemoans the inadequate levels of privacy the individual has in the state. Obel felt that “there’s an increasing sense in this world that you have to make yourself a bit of glass. To be willing to open up, use yourself as material.” ‘Stretch Your Eyes’ seems to take this concept and become saturated in it.

Primitive percussion accompanied with swaying strings eclipse a dark and brooding narrative that appears to flirt with Nordic mythology. Obel “damn[s] the gods” with the opaqueness of ‘the darkness and the ghost’ yet it’s not enough as she is afflicted by “A grip that will hold/ So tight and close/ Around my throat with/ The weight of all our lives”. It’s as if the intimate knowledge of everyone’s lives is completely suffocating and Obel’s juxtaposition of smooth sultry vocals with angelic cries dance with the flickering refrain of a piano's heartbeat.

‘Stretch Your Eyes’ is up there with some of Obel’s best and only adds further musical mastery to her career alongside Citizen of Glass that resembles a truly mesmerizing creative outlet. And with many North American and European dates already sold out, Obel returns to the UK this summer on a headline tour to indulge her fans with a setlist brimming full of more sophisticated and skillfully crafted songs.

Agnes Obel UK & Ireland tour dates:

Sun Jun 4th London, Roundhouse
Tue Jun 6th Dublin, Olympia Theatre
Thu Jun 8th Glasgow O2 ABC
Fri Jun 9th Dumfries & Galloway Eden Festival