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JOHANNSSON, JOHANN - Englabrn

Format: LP
Label & Cat.Number: Touch TO:52 LP
Release Year: 2009
Note: limited vinyl re-issue (nice gatefold-cover) of the album from 2002
Price (incl. 19% VAT): €15.00


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"Upon setting out to score the music for the play Englaborn by Havar Sigurjonsson, Johann Johannsson, co-founder of the Icelandic arts organisation Kitchen Motors, came upon a text by the Latin poet Catullus which roughly translates as, I hate and I love. Why do I do it, you might ask? I dont know, but I feel it happening to me, and it's tearing me apart. This poem concisely bridges the emotional opposites which clashed within the play itself. As the play's content was extremely violent and disturbing (according to Johannsson), his approach to the music score was one of tenderness, beauty and grace. Johannsson's score is a set of 16 delicate miniatures, whose variations are amazingly complex despite their simple, descending melodies for strings, glockenspiel, harmonium, piano, organ and electronics. The poem from Catullus appears twice within the score, sung both times by a compute programmed as a Speak 'N' Spell countertenor. This typifies Johannsson's score with its precise use of metaphor, its exceptional balance (digital-analogue, harsh-soft, violent-tender etc.) and its expressive leitmotifs that unveil a profound sadness without ever wallowing in pathos."
[Jim Haynes in The Wire]

www.touchmusic.org.uk