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The swirling, steely songs on Amber Arcades’ dazzling debut are the work of Annelotte De Graaf, a woman inspired by “time, continuity, coincidence and magic”, as well as early-morning jetlag (on Turning Light) and an artist’s plans for a utopian city (Constant’s Dream). That may all sound pretty dreamy, and these songs do have wonderful ethereal qualities, but De Graaf’s dreams are not the whimsical kind. De Graaf’s dreams have led to her working as a legal aide on UN war crime tribunals, to inviting skint strangers to share her Utrecht squat, and to spending her life savings on a flight to New York because that’s where she wanted to record her first album.
Annelotte worked with Shane Butler and Keven Lareau of Quilt on guitar and bass, and Jackson Pollis of Real Estate on drums (plus Meg Duffy playing slide guitar on the eerie, clip-clopping Apophenia) at Strange Weather recording studio in Greenpoint. They listened to “a lot of Suicide, a lot of Broadcast, Stereolab, Yo La Tengo, The Gun Club…” and worked on the songs that Annelotte had written at home in Utrecht.
Plus Support from Ella
ELLA is the solo project of Swiss-Dutch musician Ella van der Woude.
Ella was working as a film composer, composing music for films like The Treatment, Out of Love, Un Creux dans mon Coeur, when she met producer Stew Jackson (Massive Attack, Phantom Limb). They became friends and started working on songs that Ella had roughly recorded in her bedroom with a baritone guitar and old synthesizers.
This resulted in a collection of melancholic songs, equally using electronic and acoustic instrumentation. You might recognise Ella’s love for 90’s indie legends like Sparklehorse and the Pixies, off setting raw guitars and drums with dreamlike artificial ambiences. ELLA has a quixotic yet dark sound, mixing art-rock with pop sensibilities and a flare for impressing her sometimes bizaar imagination. It’s like nothing else but somehow familiar.
Leading to the release of her first album, ELLA is presenting a self-titled EP, supporting acclaimed dutch band Amber Arcades in which she also plays.
Sage Gateshead welcomes some of the finest indie and alternative rock bands from across the world.
This September and October sees a packed programme of gigs which showcase the finest international and local artists. From Motown legends The Four Tops and The Temptations and pop icons Heaven 17 to local stars Field Music and Brazilian hip hop activist Billy Saga, we have your musical taste...