Watch: 'The Blue Hour' Composers Share Behind-the-Scenes Album Trailer

Browse by:
Year
Browse by:
Publish date (field_publish_date)
Submitted by nonesuch on Wed, 09/14/2022 - 07:00
Publish date
Excerpt

With one month till the October 14 release of The Blue Hour, a song cycle written collaboratively by the female composers Rachel Grimes, Angélica Negrón, Shara Nova, Caroline Shaw, and Sarah Kirkland Snider, comes an album trailer featuring footage from the recording sessions with the chamber orchestra A Far Cry and vocal soloist Nova, narrated by the composers. You can watch it here. Set to excerpts from Carolyn Forché’s epic poem On Earth, The Blue Hour amplifies the beauty, pain, and fragility of human life from a collective female perspective.

Copy

With one month till the October 14 release of The Blue Hour, a song cycle written collaboratively by the female composers Rachel Grimes, Angélica Negrón, Shara Nova, Caroline Shaw, and Sarah Kirkland Snider, comes an album trailer featuring footage from the recording sessions with the chamber orchestra A Far Cry and vocal soloist Nova, narrated by the composers. You can watch it here:

Set to excerpts from Carolyn Forché’s epic poem On Earth, the music follows one woman’s journey through the space between life and death via thousands of hallucinatory and non-linear images. Exploring memories of childhood, of war, of love, and of loss, The Blue Hour amplifies the beauty, pain, and fragility of human life from a collective female perspective. The Washington Post calls it “a gorgeous and remarkably unified work.”

Songs by each of the other composers were released the week of the album's announcement last month: Negrón’s song “No. 3, A black map," Snider’s “No. 9, Early summer’s green plums,” Shaw’s “No. 11, Firmament,” Grimes’ “No. 26, Poppy seed,” and Nova’s “No. 36, We are as paper.” They may be found here, along with album preorders.

Snider says, “As composers, the five of us share an interest in storytelling, communication, mood, and atmosphere. A Far Cry had matchmade us for these reasons, but even they didn’t know the degree to which the five of us had inspired each other over the years. For example, Rachel Grimes was a lodestar for me—I had transcribed some of the music from her band Rachel’s twenty years ago just so I could play through it at the piano—and this music had a profound influence on my first song cycle, which I’d written for Shara Nova, who had also long been a muse for me. I had similarly revelatory experiences encountering the music of Caroline and Angélica; I was deeply inspired by them both.”

She continues, “When we first gathered to talk about this project, it was a circle of stories just like this, a sharing of deep gratitude for what we had meant to each other on our respective musical journeys. The process of creating the song cycle together reflected this. One of us would share an idea on Dropbox, and the next composer would find a kernel of inspiration within it for another piece, and so on. What I love about this song cycle is that you can hear, musically, what we have meant to each other over the years. It is an embodiment and celebration of a kind of musical sisterhood.”

A Far Cry violinist Alex Fortes adds, “Forché’s poem catalogs the scattered thoughts, visions, and imagery of a life passing ever closer to death, organized through the objective but arbitrary tool of alphabetization. The music similarly draws from an eclectic set of influences, at times setting the text quite literally ... and at times using extended string techniques to create kaleidoscopic sound-paintings of Forché’s moments of fantastical, jarring imagery. The various movements, each entirely written by one of the composers, accesses the personal vernaculars and interests of each composer.”

featuredimage
'The Blue Hour': album trailer
  • Wednesday, September 14, 2022
    Watch: 'The Blue Hour' Composers Share Behind-the-Scenes Album Trailer

    With one month till the October 14 release of The Blue Hour, a song cycle written collaboratively by the female composers Rachel Grimes, Angélica Negrón, Shara Nova, Caroline Shaw, and Sarah Kirkland Snider, comes an album trailer featuring footage from the recording sessions with the chamber orchestra A Far Cry and vocal soloist Nova, narrated by the composers. You can watch it here:

    Set to excerpts from Carolyn Forché’s epic poem On Earth, the music follows one woman’s journey through the space between life and death via thousands of hallucinatory and non-linear images. Exploring memories of childhood, of war, of love, and of loss, The Blue Hour amplifies the beauty, pain, and fragility of human life from a collective female perspective. The Washington Post calls it “a gorgeous and remarkably unified work.”

    Songs by each of the other composers were released the week of the album's announcement last month: Negrón’s song “No. 3, A black map," Snider’s “No. 9, Early summer’s green plums,” Shaw’s “No. 11, Firmament,” Grimes’ “No. 26, Poppy seed,” and Nova’s “No. 36, We are as paper.” They may be found here, along with album preorders.

    Snider says, “As composers, the five of us share an interest in storytelling, communication, mood, and atmosphere. A Far Cry had matchmade us for these reasons, but even they didn’t know the degree to which the five of us had inspired each other over the years. For example, Rachel Grimes was a lodestar for me—I had transcribed some of the music from her band Rachel’s twenty years ago just so I could play through it at the piano—and this music had a profound influence on my first song cycle, which I’d written for Shara Nova, who had also long been a muse for me. I had similarly revelatory experiences encountering the music of Caroline and Angélica; I was deeply inspired by them both.”

    She continues, “When we first gathered to talk about this project, it was a circle of stories just like this, a sharing of deep gratitude for what we had meant to each other on our respective musical journeys. The process of creating the song cycle together reflected this. One of us would share an idea on Dropbox, and the next composer would find a kernel of inspiration within it for another piece, and so on. What I love about this song cycle is that you can hear, musically, what we have meant to each other over the years. It is an embodiment and celebration of a kind of musical sisterhood.”

    A Far Cry violinist Alex Fortes adds, “Forché’s poem catalogs the scattered thoughts, visions, and imagery of a life passing ever closer to death, organized through the objective but arbitrary tool of alphabetization. The music similarly draws from an eclectic set of influences, at times setting the text quite literally ... and at times using extended string techniques to create kaleidoscopic sound-paintings of Forché’s moments of fantastical, jarring imagery. The various movements, each entirely written by one of the composers, accesses the personal vernaculars and interests of each composer.”

    Journal Articles:

Enjoy This Post?

Get weekly updates right in your inbox.
terms

X By submitting my information, I agree to receive personalized updates and marketing messages about Nonesuch based on my information, interests, activities, website visits and device data and in accordance with the Privacy Policy. I understand that I can opt-out at any time by emailing privacypolicy@wmg.com.

Thank you!
x

Welcome to Nonesuch's mailing list!

Customize your notifications for tour dates near your hometown, birthday wishes, or special discounts in our online store!
terms

By submitting my information, I agree to receive personalized updates and marketing messages about Nonesuch based on my information, interests, activities, website visits and device data and in accordance with the Privacy Policy. I understand that I can opt-out at any time by emailing privacypolicy@wmg.com.