The blossoming of subcultures catalyzed by the age of information does not always result in a diversification of our tastes. In fact, the exact opposite seems to be happening. Despite the vast and sometimes scary expanse of media at our fingertips, we often tend to sink further and further into our own niche holes, much to the detriment of our individual and collective sake. I suggest taking a musical dive outside of your comfort zone. Norwegian artist Jenny Hval’s latest album is sure to do just that for you—it’s nothing if not weird. The Practice of Love is both at once dance music and a collection of transcendent meditations on the meaning of love, femininity, and spirituality. In this project, what starts as discordance can suddenly give way to haunting, beautiful vocals atop groovy dance beats. Jazz and techno, pop and avant garde coexist in this ethereal but somehow very real world Hval has carefully crafted. It likely won’t suit your tastes at first. Listen a little longer, though, and the magic of this album will inevitably pull you in.
Photo Credit: Lasse Marhaug