From the opening notes of the title song, Encounter, you know you’re in for an album full of lush arrangements that owes as much to nature as to electronics. Or as the press notes call it “ethereal pop with post-modern dance beats.” Basically, the kind of music you’d expect to hear at a hip coffee house, a chill after hours lounge or that restaurant where it’s impossible to get a reservation. I’m probably reaching here, but I’d say The Green Children fall somewhere along the lines of Goldfrapp fronting Enigma or possibly a more new-agey La Roux.
The Green Children are Milla Sunde, from Norway, and Marlow Bevan, from England. And listening to Encounter, there’s no doubting that this group is from Europe. Now the question is can they find a home in the US? With the lead single is “Dragons” (which got a Paul Oakenfold remix), they just might have a shot. But they’re doubtful to get much play on the radio, not that radio matters much anyway. And thanks to apps like Shazam, people can discover the Green Children wherever they chance upon their music.
But there’s more to The Green Children than simply their music. There’s also an important movement. Milla and Marlow also cofounded The Green Children Foundation to help raise awareness and funds for the Grameen Bank and Grameen Healthcare Services in Bangladesh. Grameen Bank was founded by Professor Muhammad Yunus, a pioneer in microcredit (basically small loans to the very poor), which is the subject of their song “Hear Me Now.” And when the band released a CD/DVD in Norway in 2006, through sales and donations, they raised about $500k, which helped open the Grameen Green Children Eye Hospital. And 100% of the money donated to the Foundation goes directly to the cause.
However, philanthropy doesn’t sell an album as much as the music. And The Green Children have delivered a pretty solid album. Most of songs off this album would make for good mix tape fodder, so there’s that. And if you get the album, you know some of that money is going to help someone. That’s gotta count for something too, right?