Cellist Mariel Roberts presents works from her second solo recording, with performances of works written for her by George Lewis, Eric Wubbels, David Brynjar Franzson, and a collaborative work she wrote with Cenk Ergun. Wubbels’ manic gretchen am spinnrade opens the recording in a frenzy, catching Goethe and Schubert’s Gretchen in a psychic tailspin, as the metaphor of the spinning wheel is extended to her karmic life and to the careening of cause and effect in personal and public history. Vacillating between ominous tolling piano chords, demonically virtuosic repeated motivic cells, and snarling cello double stops, gretchen am spinnrade is a relentless work that gives Gretchen, or the listeners, little respite during its sixteen minute duration. As the piece closes, the spinning wheel creaks and moans in disarray, damaged beyond repair. The boundary between acoustic and electronic in Cenk Ergun and Roberts’ collaborative piece Aman has as its ingredients dry, glitchy percussive sounds, airy bow textures, and grinding double stops.
Vocalist, composer, and producer Haley Fohr has been Circuit des Yeux since she was eighteen years old. Born in the year of the Dragon in Indiana’s own “Star City” – that’s Lafayette IN – she released records regularly over the past decades; four full-length albums, along with several mini-albums and singles. Meanwhile, she has played shows everywhere, touring all the time. She has been based in Chicago since 2012. Her newest album, “Reaching For Indigo” was released last October on Drag City Records.
Haley Fohr is an ardent collaborator & has received enervated and affirmative commentary from The Quietus, NPR, New York Times, Chicago Reader, Brooklyn Rail, Pitchfork and The Wire, among many others. They have all made interesting speculations on her brand of entertainment. All we can tell you in addition is that she has a 4-octave vocal range – at least on days when it isn’t raining.
She will be performing a rare solo-vocal piece in contribution to this special event.