Colour Green, the one and only release from German underground folk denizen Sibylle Baier, has been around since the early '70s, albeit in her closet. Recorded on reel-to-reel in her home between 1970-1973, the budding actress, seamstress, writer, mother, and singer/songwriter chose family over fame, and it wasn't until the tapes landed in the hands of Dinosaur Jr.'s J. Mascis that they began their ascent into the world that they so eloquently describe. A wistful rendering of Vashti Bunyan, Leonard Cohen, and Joni Mitchell, Baier's conversational voice can be both tragic and comforting, turning the simplest task ("Driving") into a sepia-toned snapshot of longing. Each track is like a field recording of the highest quality, with every whisper of the locale present, yet unintelligible. Like Anne Briggs with a guitar or Nico without all of the junkie baggage, Baier, who would silently haul out the tape machine and press record late at night when her family was asleep, conveys the purest of intimacies with the kind of confidence only secrecy can afford. From the opening cut, when she sings "tonight when I came home from work/there he, unforeseen sat in my kitchen," the listener can't help but be transported behind the soft closed eyes that grace Colour Green's basement-scavenged, yellowing cover.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by James Christopher Monger