Orenda Fink has worked in various outfits around the Saddle Creek label, including solo (QRO solo album review), in Azure Ray (QRO live review), and as O+S with Cedric Lemoyne of Remy Zero (QRO spotlight on). The last O+S release was the self-titled debut well back in 2009 (QRO review), but now Fink has returned to the duo for You Were Once the Sun, Now You’re the Moon, with small, restrained beauty.
Fink’s exquisite voice naturally takes center stage throughout You, smooth, soft and touching on opener “Hold You Down”, then relaxed on the following “Dancing With Death” and later “Remember When… (The Backroads)”. Sometimes O+S do go decidedly too small, reduced to almost inaudible in “Dreamer of Dreams” and the closing goodbye “Honest Lies”, plus the shiny twinkle title track, but never lose the beauty.
The restraint on You Were Once the Sun, Now You’re the Moon means that it never gets away from its strength, Fink’s vocals, even if that somewhat limits its ambitions. But there is very much to say for just being nice & beautiful.