POSTFOREVER by Ai Fen Review: Fragemented puzzle pieces of the self

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POSTFOREVER is the debut album by Polish/Chinese, Prague based artist Ai fen.

The album (which I recommend should be listened to in full) feels like a shadowy auditory sculpture containing an overcast contemplative  inner world that wrestles with the strings between identity, time and  purpose. It is offering a sincere recognition and appreciation towards the fragmented puzzle pieces of the self growing up being a biracial, multinational and millennial woman. 

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Ai fen discloses a covert emptiness from within, a lush void beneath the surface. Reflecting back to us a contemporary, quasi-apocalyptic day to day, which hypnotically moves from post to post, both digitally and physically and carries a nostalgia about how the present seems to be going nowhere fast. Postforever mirrors the relationship between chronos and kairos, inner and outer, between observer and observed, caught up in the pulse and flux of fate.

“A sincere recognition and appreciation towards the fragmented puzzle pieces of the self growing up being a biracial, multinational and millennial woman.”

Ai fen’s vocals are ethereal and intimate, reminiscent of a hybrid between Sigur Rós and Steady Holiday, soaring gracefully over deep trance inducing beats. The psychotropic David Lynch like samples, hallucinatory instrumental design, cavernous bass frequencies, and trickling keys support the songs with a simple brilliance that serves as a foundation for the overall flow of the album.

This mosaic soundscape pulls the listener into a tranquil groove while simultaneously injecting a cocktail of forlorn abstract automaton-like lyrics as they tip toe along the uncanny valley. 

“Hallucinatory instrumental design, cavernous bass frequencies, and trickling keys support the songs with a simple brilliance”

This is a meditative album which is apt for listening to while working on your own art but also for ruminating over the artwork that is this 21st Century life existing between online and off. Each song on Postforever carries a subtle meta-presence that fits within itself like a fractal, each piece containing the whole. The album production and atmosphere are accurately and professionally fine tuned  towards a natural feel that keeps the human touch despite its experimental electronic elements. 

Ai fen offers her album digitally but also in the hip sentimental format of an audio cassette bedazzled with sparkles, nice. Postforever is an extremely creative gesture that is both compelling and easy to digest. After a few minutes in, Ai fen warps the sense of time for the attentive listener while softening the blow of  modern day anxieties. 

Photo credit Natalia Kuznestova

Ai Fen on Facebook | Ai Fen Website

Here is a link the album on bandcamp: https://aifen.bandcamp.com