NICOLE CAMPBELL: Arm's DistanceNicole Campbell's "Arm's Distance" is a giant leap forward for the former folk songstress. Adding the element of electronics to the fray has made for a very mesmerizing and magnetic sound.
A potent collaboration with producer Auditory Sculpture (Keith Schreiner of Dahlia, Suckapunch), Arms Distance pushes Nicole's sound to the next level. Recorded with Simon Widdowson at Are You Listening?, with the exception of "White Rabbit," recorded in Audity Studio, Arm's Distance contains the perfect entanglement of pop and folk with electronic undertones (a la David Gray). The musical arrangements on the new album are commanding, yet brilliantly capture the raw power of Nicole's voice and lyrical prowess. The album also features the talents of James Beaton on keys (Storm & the Balls, Everclear, Jeff Trott), Leah Hinchcliff on bass (Swamp Mamma Johnson), and Skip Von Kuske on Cello (Carmina Luna) just to name a few.
It's been a whirlwind year of ups and downs for the venerable Portland singer/songwriter, from the tragic loss of the step-father who raised her as his own, to her idyllic marriage earlier this year. The depth and breadth of life itself enriches each track on this album, combining with the electronic edge to make this Campbell's most powerful release to date.
As Nicole expounds, "This record seemed to become more like the title every day - just beyond my reach. I started the project with Simon in the winter of 2003 but by Spring it became evident that no matter how brillian the final tracks sounded there was still something missing and I couldn't place what it was. At that point I had to take a hiatus to be with my family during my step-father's decline due to cancer. Changing studios midstream in order to move forward with the sound was a stressful process but seemed like a small decision after what I had just been through. Working with Keith was something we had both wanted to do for a long time, but making it happen meant radical changes to the existing tracks in every form and I needed to be ready for this. Keith was a dream producer - highly opinionated yet extremely flexible and with little attachment to ego. The additional time it took to make Arm's Distance what it is today was well worth every drop of blood, sweat and tears it took to get there - and there were many. As it is, I wouldn't change a thing."
Every extra moment spent on this recording has paid off ten fold. This CD has effectively bridged the gap between the lulling singer/songwriter genre and undulating pop that is just so inviting you can't help but dance just a little now and then. This release marks bigger things to come for Campbell, we hope you agree.
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2. Break Away Clean
3. Why Goodbye
4. Hopeful Heart
6. Real Love
7. Song for Diana
8. Idle Hands
9. Arm's Distance
11. White Rabbit