Jacob Bellens / Trail Of Intuition
With his album "Trail Of Intuition" Danish singer and songwriter Jacob Bellens once again is shimmering somewhere in-between electronically influenced songwriting and synthpop music, using his characteristic voice to reflect on his life’s journey.
Since the age of five, making music means creating a parallel universe to Jacob Bellens. It’s his very own space, where he can be himself and always retreat to, no matter what happens. Out of this universe the Copenhagen based musician has released numerous songs and albums with his previous bands I Got You On Tape and Murder, with side projects and features as well as a solo artist.
“Trail Of Intuition” is his fourth solo album and the second one that’s internationally signed with hfn music. Unlike the songs for his previous release “Polyester Skin”, which he wrote mostly on piano and guitar before sending them to producer Kasper Bjørke for final production, Bellens wrote all the songs for “Trail Of Intuition” on his computer. You could see him sitting in front of his laptop in coffee shops across Copenhagen, with his headphones on, letting the basic programming and pre-production of the songs become an essential part of the writing process. The final production was made mostly by Rune Borup, who he knows back from the I Got You On Tape days and his friend Lars Iversen (The Asteroids Galaxy Tour), with whom Bellens also had the band project Goblins.
This album is a collection of snapshots of the whole range of feelings for which Jacob Bellens digs into the pool of his own experiences. “Every song I wrote is me describing my own life, even if I describe it as nonsense” he says. Any experience – happy or sad – can function as an influence; observations in public, a sudden change in mood as well as a more general sense of feeling helpless with what’s happening in the world like it has been layed out in the song "Europe’s Burning". It’s always leading back to Bellens, looking out from within, being a bit further into his life now than it was the case earlier.
With a significant focus on pop music, an electronic synth twist and catchy song structures, with its playfulness as well as the ambiguous lyrics, "Trail Of Intuition" feels both, bright and melancholic, in many ways. Light and dark co-exist but the often mellow and quirky subjects Bellens’ lyrics evolve around end up tipping more towards the lighter side.
The opener “Sunrise In East” was written some years ago in context of Bellens’ band I Got You On Tape but never got finished until recently. It combines warm piano sounds with a semi-psychedelic fantasy and references both personal memories of the times spent with the band as well as thoughts about nuclear war and druggy, sleeping bees.
The rather upbeat single “Renegade” is dealing with the experience of loss as well as the fear of losing a loved one again, but it’s also about comparing the current situation in life to “where you thought you would be when you where young”, says Bellens. Assumingly everyone can relate to those kinds of thoughts and accordingly catchy does “Renegade” sound. Driven by a groovy electronic bass it has an optimistic and hopeful vibe although lyrically it's one of the darker songs on the the album.
While “All The Songs” and “Sound Of Laughter” are in many ways merely classical love songs, “Brick By Brick” revolves around the love for the process of making and creating music one day after another.
“Friday” is “maybe the song that sounds the most like a band would sound” and is basically about longing to be somewhere else, dreaming about packing your bags and taking off but not quite being able to act upon it just yet.
“One Of A Kind” is a song Jacob Bellens wrote before the release of his first solo album but never recorded it in a version he was happy with. Many years later he played it live at a concert when Kasper Bjørke happened to be in the audience. He urged Bellens to finally record the song. “But I thought it needed a different production so I did what I sometimes do and wrote a ‚sibling‘ song, an attempt to make a different version of the same song”, Bellens says. That’s how “Untouchable” came to life, the single released off the previous album "Polyester Skin", that became a bit of a hit – and in Italy, surprisingly for a ballad, even a radio hit at one of Italy’s biggest radio stations. So “One Of A Kind” was basically the template for “Untouchable” and indeed you can hear the connection between the two songs, both breathing a similar darkish but groovy atmosphere.
In “One Of A Kind” sluggish piano tones create a jazzy feel while the strings by Ida Marie Arendt and Kirstine Elise Pedersen add a bit of drama and a trumpet (Mikkel Grevsen) even a festive moment.
In his musical universe Jacob Bellens is king. With “Trail of Intuition” he's headed out for the fourth time to tell his story wrapped in catchy pop tunes full of playful oddity and to steal the hearts of his (soon-to-be) fans all over the world.
"It channels Scandinavian electro-pop with lots of interesting instrument choices and a catchy hook and groove." (Higher Plain Music)
"This creates a floating, electronic, synthpop on which the Copenhagen muses about life. Let yourself be carried away by his melancholic voice." (Indie Style)
"Beautiful and cool vibes." (Como Las Grecas)
‘Trail Of Intuition’ is a glittery, heartfelt, modern pop production and a confident progression from his last album ‘Polyester Skin’. (60 Minutes)
"Not only the pulsating bass line but also the two lovely dancers make you want to join them and show off your moves." (Nordic By Nature)
"In a catchy pop approach Bellens uses synthesizer sounds, strings, a trumpet and drums as well as his characteristic voice to reflect on his very own life’s journey." (TixForGigs)
"Excellent electronic pop! Always catchy and touching." (Convergence Magazine)