Recorded in spring 2014, “Heart” is the debut solo album by Gothenburg-born Joel Alter. During the process, he focused on finding the artist within himself and accepting the outcome as the value of his own footprint. But also for Uncanny Valley, releasing an album by an artist of whom we never released music before as singles or on compilations marks new ground. But since we know Joel for some time and are great admirers of his two albums he released together with Henrik Jonsson as Jonsson/Alter on Kontra-Musik this step felt very natural.
“Broken Chord” opens up the album as an intimate, string-heavy House track and is succeeded by “22 Hours”, a wonderful piece of slightly dark pop music featuring French singer Luvinsky Atche. With its melancholic and catchy vocal it brings you right into the album’s narrational flow. Following up is “Everlasting” featuring longtime friend Christoffer Berg on piano and vocals. These two tracks mark the emotional backbone of the album. After that, “I Got It” turns out as a stumbling Disco affair while “Unsung Heroes” is a subtle track with its guitar sample from another era and mystical spoken words. “Out Of Bounds” is a driving House track that will cause a stir on open-minded dance floors when the trumpet by Stefan Sporsén finally enters. The same applies to “Mecca”: After a seductive chord inferno that carries the track for several minutes, a cryptic synth line seem to come out of nowhere and marks a salvation. Finally, “Measures of Love” combines Joel playing cello and Christoffer Berg on Korg Mono Poly to a peaceful and beatless conclusion. This was recorded in a live-jam and is the result of pure inspiration.
Joel has been carrying the idea of recording a solo album for some years now. Naturally, “Heart” combines various influences, not only musically but also from his personal life. When he proceeded further into the production process, he limited himself using the computer less and instead learning to trust his intuition, the flow of his fingers and to use his own voice as an instrument. This led to an album that is rather hard to pin down genre-wise but even easier to connect to emotionally when you listen to it from start to finish.
The artwork is based on several oil paintings by Swedish artist Joakim Heidvall.
All tracks were written, produced and mixed by Joel Alter.
Vocals on “22 Hours” by Luvinsky Atche.
Vocals and piano on “Everlasting” by Christoffer Berg, recorded at Svenska Grammofonstudion.
Trumpet on “Out Of Bounds” by Stefan Sporsén.
Korg Mono Poly on “Measures Of Love” by Christoffer Berg.
All tracks are published by Copyright Control.