Taken by Trees – East of Eden [2009]

September 14, 2009


I’m really not into “World Music” or catchy backstories; the reason being I fear they could displace artistic integrity.  The “culturally aware” soak up music from other continents, believing they are more enlightened because they listen to music with a Sheng or Gudugudu.  Artists that have cool stories to accompany their music (like Passion Pit getting a record deal when lead singer Agelakos’ songs written for his girlfriend for Valentine’s Day got discovered by his friends) aquire fame and sell more records than artists with just as much or more talent.  A better example of this is everyone’s huge obsession with Bon Iver because of that cabin story without considering the much deeper music of Phosphorescent’s album Pride (bear in mind that I love Bon Iver too).   But enough of this rant.

Album post #4: Though her release East of Eden of last week under a solo project named Taken by Tress has a fantastic backstory of a trip to Pakistan to record the album, Victoria Bergsman of Peter, Björn, and John is not guilty of sacrificing her art for a hook.  You can hear it in the music.  The songs are subtle, and the story never dominates the music.  This album is wistful, plaintive, and fun (see My Boys, cover of Animal Collective’s My Girls).  I posted a couple of samples below but you should really listen to the whole album.  Go to Grooveshark and type in “taken by trees east of eden,” click on album, and start playing from the first song To Lose Someone (my favorite on the album).  Enjoy!

source: jmac through jdumk



  1. This is magnificent. As you and I were saying the other night, the voice of the singer can really make or break a group for me, and Bergsman does not dissapoint. She also seamlessly weaves the vocal part into the rest of the ensemble. Truly lovely tracks.

  2. I love the texture of this album. I hope you’re doing well –
    P.S. I agree with you about Phosphorescent.

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