Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Recording: Jóhann Jóhannsson

Artist: Jóhann Jóhannsson with the ACME String Quartet

Song: unknown*

Recorded at The Music Gallery, September 8, 2013.

Jóhann Jóhannsson with the ACME String Quartet - unknown

Full review to follow. In town for TIFF to celebrate their contribution to Denis Villeneuve's new film Prisoners (and while I don't know if this set-leading piece is from that new effort, one might guess that it does, given its elegantly cinematic sweep) Iceland's Jóhann Jóhannsson and a stripped-down string quartet version of the American Contemporary Music Ensemble joined forces for a night of gorgeous sounds. Combining the string quartet's icy progressions set against Jóhannsson's laptop-generated drones, the set started with a fairly ambient sensibility as heard here, but did grow someone more elaborate with the addition of piano and the occasional robot falsetto. Combined with some grainy, abstract visuals, this induced a pleasing sort of lethargy. I wasn't familiar with Jóhannsson's work coming in, but this set provided an impetus to start digging through his discography.

* Does anyone know the title to this one? Please leave a comment!

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