Norwegian singer/songwriter Hilma Nikolaisen, the former bassist of 4AD’s Serena-Maneesh, continues with her minimalistic acoustic direction on her tender album title-track "Heritage".
Having debuted her stripped back, acoustic-driven palette on previous Heritage album singles "Maybe Today (Satan)" and "All In (Into The Outset)", Nikolaisen continues with her lullaby-style vocal delivery on her album title-track "Heritage", which sees her soft (and sometimes husky) vocal tones dance with the warm plucks of her guitar strings.
Nikolaisen's soothing acoustic melodies enhance the narrative of the song, which sees the Norwegian singer/songwriter poetically reflect on living in the moment, "A minute by the shore / We gazed at the horizon / You said God how lucky we are."
On "Heritage", flecks of Nikolaisen’s husky vocals seep out, elevating the rawness of her stripped back musical direction, while the fingerstyle guitar melody provides a honeyed yet sentimental backdrop to the tender song.
The decorative instrumentation that appeared on previous albums has been stripped away, and by doing that Nikolaisen's attention to the song's skeletal frame shines bright, allowing any imperfections to reiterate the personal nature of the track.
Nikolaisen tells Best Fit of the track, "I grew up with my father’s nylon string guitars, but I never really explored them properly back then. Fingerstyle guitar was definitely not considered kosher in my punk rock teens. In early 2020 I finally got myself an old nylon string guitar, and "Heritage" is one of the songs that quite immediately came to me, along with revisiting the beautiful instrument. I was in a good songwriting flow and felt like writing an optimistic piece about moving on, about maintaining, in lack of better ways to put it. In many ways this is what the album revolves around - time, about looking back and ahead, and most of all focusing on the core of now."
She adds of the recording process, "I was aiming for an uplifting approach, a transparent and direct form. With these things in mind I had made proper demo recordings beforehand, pretty determined on what to do. Anyhow, I ended up with stripping things down further, eliminating excess elements in the studio recordings and throughout the mixing process. To me, the Heritage title-track now comes off as pointed, genuine, and I like it."