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Jacob Faurholt’s nightmares give the listener a jolt

Last updated on October 10, 2022

Close your eyes, plug in, and tune out to Jacob Faurholt’s When the Spiders Crawl from Raw Onion Records. The songwriter’s tenth album celebrates the cacophony of imagination, a trip through twelve songs from one of  Denmark’s most prolific artists.

Faurholt’s lo-fi alt-rock recording is shaped by influences like Sparklehorse and Guided By Voices. Mostly recorded at his home studio, the sonic soundscape feels expansive. The record opens with the frenetic, poppy opener “Droneflowers” and its horrifying lyrics. Hold on; the nightmare unravels with stunning detail.

“Madness On the Rise” feels heavy, like an attempt to sludge through the reality of a horror story. Somehow, in a post-pandemic state, we are living and sharing that uncertain reality. Music is Faurholt’s grounding point, and his confidence in that oozes through each note and production choice in “Sometimes I Feel the Stars are Under Us” and its thematic mirror “The Darkness Feels Like A Warm Place To Be.”  After the flash into the confessional vocals of “Comforting Sounds,” the guitar invites us into a lullaby. A sudden drop into the abyss (scored by orchestra) on “The Stars Are Cold Like Ice” seems to be an all-encompassing metaphor for love’s power over us. This song is out of this world!

Nearing the end of the record, “Lightning Strikes” and “Like Songs of Pain” must be mentioned for their nuanced simplicity. “The Moon is Slow” is one of my new favorites, as somehow the echo of this song lives in my head.  “T-Rex” is an in-your-face rocker, simply a punctuation to this stream of consciousness. The title track, “When Spiders Crawl,” rocks the record back into the lo-fi grit for which this artist is known. Dark yet trippy, the nightmare fits to conclude Faurholt’s tenth album.–Lisa Whealy