I thought this year I would still try to keep my blog going, but instead of writing up every gig, I’d focus on the standout gigs and what a first gig to write up, it’s already a strong contender for gig of the year!
A few months ago I did a ‘random’ at Rough Trade. The artist was called Myrkur (aka Amalie Bruun) and although I knew nothing about her, by the end of the gig I was hooked. Myrkur, is on the surface a Scandinavian black metal artist. But she also has had a pop career and most pertinent to this review, a background in Scandinavian folk music. It was this aspect that interested me most so the idea of a whole gig of her folk music in a church, had to be done.
First up was Jo Quail playing an cello using various loop pedals. She was an excellent introduction to the evening.
St John’s of Bethnal Green is a great little venue. It has decent acoustics and tonight, the lighting gave it a spooky atmosphere, the perfect setting of Myrkur.
Myrkur practices kulning, an ancient method of calling herds in the wilds of Scandinavia. Mrykur, started the evening with her own kulning, calling her audience to attention. From this moment onwards, I was bewitched.
There’s something special about Myrkur. She has a beautiful versatile voice. With the power to sing metal, but the delicacy to sing folk music. Tonight she played a combination of acoustic versions of her metal and folk music mainly from Denmark and Sweden. Regularly switching between piano, drum, guitar and some traditional instrument. She was accompanied by two singers who complemented Myrkur’s voice perfectly and a guitarist playing various traditional instruments. Even though much of the evening I couldn’t understand the words, everything was simply beautiful. I was simply bewitched and from the complete silence, so was everyone else in the audience. (And I was glad that my camera has a silent mode)