Nordic Music Central Viking Hero

anmar (Denmark) – Gaia (sample track from EP This Magical Place)

anmar (Anne Marie Roel Messerschmidt) or the Patchwork Musician as she refers to herself on account of how she “uses multiple tools as if she’s in a playground” returns to these pages with the release of an EP, ‘this magical place’, which is home to the single we previously reviewed, ‘My Voice’ and also to this one, ‘Gaia’, which was also a single.

Various methodology is used in selecting these sample tracks, and in this instance the deciding factors were that I’m weirdly attracted to this (Greek) ‘goddess of earth/mother of all life’ thing and that I quite like the Swedish ‘world beat’ musician who goes under the name of Gaeya. Simple as that really.

anmar’s music, lyricism and entire creation process is complex, which is why I opted not to take on the whole album on a Sunday evening after a hard afternoon’s sunbathing (yes – in Manchester, summer was today!), but persistence with any individual track certainly pays dividends.

The context of the EP is that the discovery of her ‘magical place’ started in autumn 2021, when anmar left her band to “find her own sound” but without a clear plan for how to reach her abstract goal.

Ultimately she began to notice the sounds around her, to record and sample them. She rediscovered curiosity, and a whole new world opened up in the small things which brought her back to the immersion of childhood, and it is here that the first faint notes of what would become the EP ‘this magical place’ arose.

Her explanations of how each individual song came to be demonstrate clearly to me how her creations are based on curiosity and imagination rather than the mundane pragmatism of day-to-day-life. Even her email address (becominganmar@…) suggests that. Well, rather her than John Malkovich, that’s for sure.

In ‘Gaia’ she appears to realise her own strength and fortitude, a revelation bestowed on her by her own alter ago, who “knocks me back into myself”. There are a couple of lines that follow that which, if I’m interpreting them correctly, are sheer genius:

“Strong kicks, a wonderful earthquake”. Are those the kicks in the womb being re-experienced, followed by the earthquake of birth? Or is my imagination running riot? If I’m even half way correct that’s right up there with St Vincent’s ‘Birth in reverse’ as a graphic narrative.

Musically, the opening part of the track bears some similarities to the work of the previously mentioned Gaeya; light, airy and ethereal all at the same time. You can imagine it being sung around a campfire at one of the ‘Earth Gatherings’ she periodically organises in the woods.

Then around half way through it morphs decisively into a delightful piece of Enya.

As I mentioned, the track is light and airy but the creative juices run deep here. Neither ‘Gaia’ nor the EP as a whole can be listened to casually while you’re doing the washing up but set aside some time to ponder her work in some depth and you won’t be disappointed. Household chores can wait.

‘this magical place’ was self-released on 2nd June.

Find her on:




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