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Mortality and Loss

Carolina Eyck releases 'Elegies for Theremin & Voice'
on Butterscotch Records on 27 September 2019


German vocalist, theremin player and composer Carolina Eyck (born 1987), widely considered the world's foremost thereminist, releases her third LP for Butterscotch Records, Elegies for Theremin & Voice today (27 September 2019). Elegies is released in the centennial year of the invention of the theremin - an electronic instrument played without physical contact - and was created over the course of two years at producer Allen Farmelo's studio in upstate New York. In connection with the new album, Eyck will tour the US from 29 September through 9 November 2019 and perform with the Albany Symphony and the Boston Modern Orchestra Project - dates to be announced.

Carolina Eyck playing the theremin. Photo © 2017 Ananda Costa
Carolina Eyck playing the theremin. Photo © 2017 Ananda Costa

Eyck has composed these ten pieces specifically for the LP format - her second outing doing so for Butterscotch Records. Track listing:

1 Duet I
2 Remembrance
3 Absence
4 Uncle
5 Solo I
6 Duet II
7 Commemoration
8 Presence
9 Friend
10 Solo II

Together they form a haunting work in which Eyck surprises us with her vocal prowess, which ranges from forlorn moans of grief, to primordial howls of anger, to runs of nonsensical syllables that reinforce the ineffable nature of her topic: mortality and loss. There are no discernible words to be found on the LP, yet Eyck communicates a veritable encyclopedia of emotions without them. In one instance Eyck makes the album's theme crystal clear - she dedicates the album to her friend Wiebke (1987-2016) and her uncle Mercin (1962-1979).

'Elegies for Theremin & Voice' LP cover image
Elegies for Theremin & Voice LP cover image

While Eyck started with loops as sketches for her compositions, Farmelo insisted that everything on the LP be recorded in live takes, even as phrases repeat themselves. The approach gives the LP a subtle earthiness. Farmelo says:

At times, Eyck's voice and theremin become indistinguishable, suggesting the deconstruction of language that is at the center of the LP's ethos while simultaneously creating a kind of sonic camouflage. This camouflaging effect is especially strong when Eyck deploys her exceptional control of micro-intervals to create pronounced beating between voices.

Posted 27 September 2019 by Christina Jensen




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