Bibio allows us to take a deep, relaxing breath amid our busy lives by bringing us closer to nature to help soothe our souls with Ribbons.
My old, rusted smile got some oil added it to it while listening to this album. Ribbons gives a nostalgia-fuelled, summer day through acoustic guitars, textured layers, ambience, and various stringed and eclectic instruments. It is a calm walk through the forest or a relaxing sit on a seaside dock. Listening also reminds me of playing Kirby’s Dreamland on the GameBoy.
There exists a feeling of unrest; a bit of chaos within the comfort. Just like our childhoods or even walking through the woods, it isn’t all happiness. We must have some sadness or unease in life in order to come out the other side as better people. Bibio seems to really understand this within his work. But I think overall, his understanding lies within his connection with nature. The connection can be found within the soundscapes, instrumentation and (hear me out) the actual recordings of nature.
The ending of the song “Watch The Flies” has a repeating guitar line which sounds like the ebbing and flowing of the ocean; both calming and chaotic in feeling. While “Curls” starts with a calming vintage sounding guitar and a few birds can be heard in the background. This song has a slight Simon and Garfunkel effect to it which leads to a very relaxing feel. “Old Graffiti” on the other hand has a very different vibe. It has a funk driven groove all through it while some keyboards and synth add some lead bits. His singing is more reminiscent of an R’n’B song and overall has quite a fun tone.
“Erdaydidder-Erdiddar” brings an added bit of culture and dare I say drama. There’s an unsettling feel that is present in this track and I find myself repeating it while listening to Ribbons. The song is instrumental apart from a bit of chanting. But the amount of visuals that pop into my mind while I listen to this song is incredible. I get transported to the Shire or what I would assume the hills of Ireland would look like. There’s also a small and very old village that can be seen. People are dancing in a circle in slow motion while others dressed in aged and well-worn garb hanging clothing to dry.
One gripe I do have with this album, if one could call it a gripe, was that I found myself needing to be in a specific state of mind to be able to listen to it. While this isn’t necessarily a bad thing since Ribbons allows itself to be background music if that’s what you want. I tend to listen to music on a much more visceral level and found that just throwing the record on at random intervals left me not enjoying it as I should be.
This is an album that will definitely be getting some replays during the summer; as I lounge outside book in hand. It’s an easy album to throw on in the background but can also be enjoyed on a deeper level if that is preferred. But there’s the level of visual stimulation that Bibio brings through the full understanding of nature and sound that is what shines above all else here. This is well worth the listen.