The Spirit & The Cloud


A review of our March 1, 2012 Ecstatic Music Festival concert at Merkin Concert Hall, NYC

photo by David Andrako

photo by David Andrako

Here’s a lovely review of The Spirit & The Cloud that includes mentions of Mika’s “incredible posse of fans, musicians and friends” (our audience was indeed fantastic), Krister's rad tux (!) and my way way goth hairdo! :)
The article covers Judd Greenstein’s EMF mission, the term “indie classical”, what it means to be a modern musician (with Nadia Sirota as a brilliant example) and what might happen when styles and traditions collide - something that has become comme-il-faut these days. 

Read Daphne Carr’s full article here.

…”It had been a long night in the hotel bar after the gig, where Mikael Karlsson’s incredible posse of fans, friends, and musicians ambled between floors with champagne buckets and half eaten roast beef sandwiches in hand. Karlsson has a degree in composition from the Aaron Copland School of Music and a Skrillex side-shave. (Neither seems an affection: the dude is a seriously great composer and way, way goth.) One of his friends wore a tux for no reason.”

The Swedes were more successful, their arrangements and original compositions utilizing Wallentin’s brilliant, husky voice and Karlsson’s electronic-tinged, texture-obsessed works for small ensembles to serve their mutual dark spiritual sympathies. The first half of the concert split Karlsson’s works and Wallentin’s songs. Karlsson’s solo flute piece called “Nasty Fucker” used a variety of subtle effects on signals from several microphones, including one at the musician’s mouth, to augment the physicality of performances, and was followed by taut fleshing out of the big skeleton that is the original version of Wildbirds & Peacedrums’ “Doubt/Hope.”

…”The second half was the full collaboration: a song cycle called “The Spirit & The Cloud.” The song cycle seems a natural fit for a such first step experiments: ambitious enough to extend an idea over a multi-part composition, but each composition unique and short enough to resemble a more harmonically ambitious version of a song. That prog and avant rock and other art-into-pop genres have been calling their long-form works song cycles since the ’60s makes the conceptual leap less difficult too. The two musicians seemed equally careful and capable in each section,…”

(Nasty Fucker was performed by Andrew Rehrig.)

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