Thursday's installment of the Ecstatic Music Festival brought together experimental pop vocalist Mariam Wallentin of Wildbird & Peacedrums with new-music powerhouse ACME and Swedish composer Mikael Karlsson.
Recorded March 1, 2012 at Merkin Concert Hall, the evening was centered around the premiere of The Spirit & the Cloud, a song cycle co-written by Karlsson and Wallentin. Performed with the accompaniment of ACME, the music blended post-classical stylings with electroacoustic manipulations over an underlying "pop" sensibility. The show also featured a number of Karlsson's instrumental works (including an extensive work for solo flute and electronics) as well as reorchestrated Wildbird & Peacedrums pieces.
As one-half of the Swedish experimental duo Wildbirds & Peacedrums, Mariam Wallentin's eclectic vocal delivery incorporates elements of jazz and soul alongside pop stylings. Mikael Karlsson has collaborated with Lykke Li, Claire Chase, Joshua Rubin, Lydia Lunch, and Mivos Quartet among others.
In perfect keeping with the Ecstatic Music Festival's abandon of clear genre boundaries, the American Contemporary Music Ensemble's resume includes collaborations with indie rockers Grizzly Bear, composer Ingram Marshall, and electronic performer MATMOS, among many others.