Boomkat Product Review:
Ana Roxanne follows up the much loved "~~~" with a beautiful full-length for Kranky, joining dots between the label's past and present with heartbreaking, resonant sounds that join the dots between Alice Coltrane, Labradford, Grouper, Midori Takada, Julee Cruise and beyond.
Ana Roxanne grew up obsessed with her mom's collection of 80s and 90s R&B CDs, singing along to them while also training her voice more formally in a church choir. Later, she was introduced to Hindustani classical music and - while studying at the prestigious Mills College - started to work with synthesizers as a homage to the devotional music of Alice Coltrane. All these connecting threads are present on "Because of a Flower” - an album that’s more than the sum of its many constituent parts.
Displaying a remarkable aesthetic range and coherence, Roxanne's influences and reference points are so varied that listening through the album is like reading a diary or a book of poems. Opening with a spoken word piece snipped from a harmony textbook, we're transported to a different world as billowing drones drift into view while Roxanne's voice echoes above.
From there, we're ushered through muted guitar phrases, drum machine loops, disintegrating dialogue snippets - all coalescing beneath Ana Roxanne's spectral voice. Each track is markedly different, but the album hangs together so perfectly it's almost impossible to separate a single moment from the sublime whole - it is many things and one complete entity simultaneously.
Anyone enthralled by classic Kranky, dreampop, or the introspective pop fissures of HTRK will likely find a world of rich comfort inside this one - in our book a modern classic.