today I would like to introduce you to I am Oak, not only because I simply adore his music, but especially because his new album has just been released and I believe it sounds beautiful.
I am Oak exists because of the Dutch singer and songwriter Thijs Kuijken – body and soul of this magnificent music project. The name I am Oak tastes sweet in my mouth!
At first, it was the name I am Oak that caught my attention: the connection to Nature is strong, because of Thijs Kuijken love and affection for It – that was what brought this musician really close to my heart, even before listening to one single song of his. I am Oak though is also a tribute to Thijs Kuijken‘s hometown, Bergeijk, which in Dutch means in fact Oak.
I am Oak‘s melodies are simple and minimal: a combination of acoustic guitars, banjos, samples and organ sounds – which are the traditional instruments of the folk artists that inspired Thijs at the start of his project; his voice, though, remains extremely unique: a sort of relaxed, almost opaque tone of voice, combined with the choirs of his band – I am Oak‘s choirs especially characterizes its music.
Since 2008, when I am Oak self-released his first album Old Songd, two more albums and a numerous amount of EP’s were released under the label Snowstar Records; On Claws (2010) and Oasem (2011) were I am Oak‘s only full length albums, until, a little more than a couple of weeks ago, Nowhere or Tammensaari came out, on the 1st of June.
Nowhere or Tammensaari, with 12 tracks, claims to be the most complete and intriguing work by I am Oak so far – with more complex melodies and accentuated choirs. The album was apparently recorded on a lonely Finnish island, somewhere on the Baltic Sea; as soon as I have heard the album’s title, I knew it must have been related to Finland, because of the word “saari“, which is island in Finnish – though I didn’t manage to locate Tammensaari anywhere on the maps.
I am Oak – On Trees and Birds and Fire, On Claws (2010)
have a good listen of I am Oak and enjoy the last week of June!