Thursday, January 25, 2018

USA: Syrinx Effect - A Sky You Could Strike A Match On (2018)

KATE OLSON - [saxophone/effects/composer/producer ]
NAOMI SIEGEL - [trombone/effects/composer/producer/recording engineer]
ERIC EAGLE - [drummer, producer, recording/mixing engineer}
JACQUES WILLIS - [drummer, produced beat on Super Soaker]

1. Cameronathon 4:09
2. Bottomfeeders 5:31
3. Crabwalk 4:43
4. The Bankrobber Song 3:58
5. Redwood Cry 6:46
6. Super Soaker 5:18
7. Gretta Returns To Dream 4:47
8. Mobligations 6:44
9. Song For Dead Sparrows 5:19
10. The Hui 2:27

Interstellar-folk-punk-jazz duo from Seattle puts their thumbprint on music with expansive possibilities as they explicitly combine improvised chamber music with electronics and composed sections for their adventurous new album, A Sky You Could Strike A Match On.

Their inventive play and progressive roots won the hearts of 4Culture’s team of grant-makers and cultural advocates to empower this album with a generous grant which has given Syrinx Effect the freedom to finish the record and release it independent of any record label.

Syrinx Effect makes music that is authentic and expressive, using everything from folk melodies to ambient noise. Both women demonstrate prowess, thoughtfulness and virtuosity whether taking a solo or playing a supporting role making each piece a meditation, an exploration, and sometimes a romp!

They easily switch between dreamy ambient loops, catchy pop riffs and found sounds, all the while paying homage to their free improv roots. Naomi plays trombone with guitar pedals and Kate plays soprano saxophone with laptop and other toys. The duo got its start curating the Racer Sessions in Seattle, and has gone on to perform prolifically around the US, collaborating with many mainstays of the improvised music scene such as Wayne Horvitz, Robin Holcomb, Elliott Sharp, Bobby Previte, Stuart Dempster, Allison Miller, Rene Hart.

The music on A Sky You Could Strike A Match On often defies categorization. It’s jazz-ish, but it’s not jazz. The melodies sound like folk songs, now with trombone (Naomi) and soprano saxophone (Kate) there to replace the trademark plaintive vocals and twangy guitars. Each track has an electronic element, but the sounds come from acoustic instruments. The inspiration for each composition is rooted in a synthesis of the beauty of the natural world and the dichotomies of city living.

Something Else Reviews spoke about Syrinx Effect’s general vibe:

“The genius of the music lies not so much in the performance of it — which is captivating, anyway — as it does in its conception. Any musician can go get these toys, but Syrinx Effect knows how to use ’em.” —S. Victor Aaron.

A uniquely personal record for Naomi and Kate, the album is a combination of travelogue and scrapbook, and delivers on all counts.

The album opens with Naomi’s composition Cameronathon, which starts with an open groove that the band adapted to live performance with a combination of live tambourine and triggered studio sounds. It was this innovation that spurred the duo to seek a support grant from Seattle’s 4Culture. They were awarded a generous grant, which has given Syrinx Effect the freedom to finish the record and release it independent of any record label.

From the skittering of a crab on the Hawaiian island of Molokai to the sounds of a water gun fight in the hot summer sun, each track recalls the travels or musings of its composer. Naomi’s Gretta Returns to Dream imagines the inner life of a happy chicken, and Kate’s Bottomfeeders is an homage to delicious denizens of the deep, like catfish and lobster.

Kate and Naomi often write music independently, bringing fully-formed tunes to rehearsal with each other, and they use the rehearsal studio as a creative space to refine and flesh out their ideas. On A Sky You Could Strike A Match On, their third self-released album, they also invited drummer/producer/ recording engineer Eric Eagle into the mix. Eric was instrumental in the polishing of each track for its eventual release, and created the majority of the drum sounds in the studio himself. Kate’s composition The Bankrobber Song features Eric at the drumset, cuing tempo changes and breathing life into the New Orleans-style group improvisation at the end. The music was recorded in 2016 and 2017 primarily at, Skoorsound.

The title of the album, “A Sky You Could Strike a Match On” is a line from the poem The After by Melinda Mueller published by Entre Rios Books. “Song for Dead Sparrows” was commissioned by Entre Rios Books to go with the book-length poem The After.
Syrinx Effect looks forward to bringing this new album to entirely new audiences, close to home and abroad.

Previous Press:
“Utilizing looping, distortion pedals, and a laptop, the two women create varied landscapes of sound—forests, skylines, desolate plains—populated with sympathetic voices, their instruments bending and slashing to achieve an expressiveness usually reserved for strings.....playful, unpredictable, and, most important, just plain interesting.” —Mark Baumgarten, Seattle Weekly

“... dreaming music... it just happens to occasionally chatter and fling about in its sleep.... lovely melodic lines, perpetually intertwining and unraveling, inspire more liveliness than an ambient hush can contain.” —Dave Sumner,

“... the two artists have created a sound and a world that is all their own, and have provided the listener with a musical journey that is not only aurally stimulating, but life affirming. Outstanding!” —Stefan Wood,

“The genius of the music lies not so much in the performance of it — which is captivating, anyway — as it does in its conception. Any musician can go get these toys, but Syrinx Effect knows how to use ’em.” —S. Victor Aaron, Something Else Reviews

“It's just as much a writer's album as a jazz record. There's plenty of great soloing, a variety of moods.” —Cory Walsh Missoulian.

MARTIN FEVEYEAR - [mastering]
SUNJAE LEE - [Album Artwork]
JONATHAN LAWSON - [graphic design]
4CULTURE - [Grant to support this album’s production]
Chicago Mastering - [vinyl mastering]

Instagram: @SyrinxEffect

Previous projects from duo:

Previous projects from individual artists:

Press Contact:
Maryella Marie
Cell: +54.911.3210. 8014 (Buenos Aires)

Whatsapp: +1.678.525.2993