The Whale Watching Tour, Sam Amidon, Ben Frost, Nico Muhly & Valgeir Sigurđsson, Barbican Centre, London, 27/09/2010

themilkman on Sep 28th 2010 11:14 pm

The Whale Watching Tour, Sam Amidon, Ben Frost, Nico Muhly & Valgeir Sigurđsson, Barbican Centre, London, 27/09/2010

Bedroom Community, the label founded by Valgeir Sigurđsson, has, for over four years, been a hub of intense collaborative work between the various members of the collective. They regularly work on each others’ records, in various capacities, and often join effort on stage. In the last year, the four embarked on an ambitious tour which has seen them perform across Europe. Originally scheduled for last April, the Barbican performance of Bedroom Community’s Whale Watching Tour was postponed after that Icelandic volcano started erupting, causing chaos in European air traffic. On a prematurely autumnal late September evening, the Bedroom Community caravan finally stopped at London’s Barbican Centre for one of the very last dates with all four members of the collective, Nico Muhly, Sam Amidon, Ben Frost and Valgeir Sigurđsson, accompanied by four additional musicians, Una Sveinbjarardóttir (violin), Nadia Sirota (viola), Brogar Magnason (contrabass) and Helgi Jonson (trombone and vocals) playing in this particular format. Continue Reading »

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SAM AMIDON: I See The Sign (Bedroom Community)

themilkman on Mar 9th 2010 01:09 am

Sam Amidon: I See The Sign

SAM AMIDON
I See The Sign
HVALUR9
Bedroom Community 2010
10 Tracks. 42mins23secs

Amazon: UK: CD | LP US: CD | LP Boomkat: CD

Hailing from a small provincial town in south Vermont, Sam Amidon grew up in a family of traditional folk musicians who have made a life out of performing a wide range of music from the American folklore and teaching old New England stories and songs. Having left his native state and moved to New York, Sam took his musical roots with him, performing old songs, bringing them up to date by creating modern acoustic arrangements. He eventually released his first album, But This Chicken Proved Falsehearted, in 2007. After joining the ranks of the ever excellent Bedroom Community, Sam recorded All Is Well, his second album, with a number of Icelandic musicians, including Valgeir Sigurðsson. The album also saw contributions from Bedroom Community regulars Ben Frost and Nico Muhly, while Sam’s younger brother Stefan played drums on a couple of tracks. Since, Sam has contributed to his fellow label mates’ releases, especially Nico Muhly’s Mothertongue album, for which he provided vocals and played banjo and guitar on The Only Tune, a piece adapted from a disturbing folk song about two sisters that Muhly’s parents used to sing to him as a child.  Continue Reading »

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Nico Muhly And Friends, Union Chapel, London, 08/05/2009

themilkman on May 11th 2009 12:37 am

Nico Muhly and Friends, Union Chapel, London, 08/05/2009

The Union Chapel, up in Islington, north London, played host to Nico Muhly’s pre-ATP performance this Friday evening, and as the billing suggested, the New Yorker had brought along a handful of friends, including young folk singer Sam Amidon, pianist Thomas Bartlett, who usually officiates under the name of Doveman, Icelandic vocalist Helgi Hrafn and Bedroom Community label head and Björk and Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy collaborator Valgeir Sigurðsson.

In the two years since the release of his debut album, Speaks Volume, on Bedroom Community, Nico’s profile has risen greatly. His second album, Mothertongue, released last year, showcased his incredible range much more clearly. Beside his solo work, he’s also orchestrated music for people as diverse as Björk, Antony And The Johnsons, Rufus Wainwright, Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy and, most recently, Grizzly Bear. Continue Reading »

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NICO MUHLY: Mothertongue (Bedroom Community)

themilkman on Jun 3rd 2008 11:26 pm

Nico Muhly: Mothertongue

NICO MUHLY
Mothertongue
HVALUR5CD
Bedroom Community 2008
10 Tracks. 49mins11secs

A year on from the release of his critically acclaimed debut album Speaks Volumes, New York-based classical composer Nico Muhly returns with an altogether more ambitious and visionary record. Entirely based around the notion of language, Mothertongue is a strange and fascinating work which goes beyond Muhly’s previous work and undoubtedly feeds on his brush with various musical genres, most notably with the likes of Björk, Antony & The Johnsons or Bedroom Community’s label head and producer Valgeir Sigurðsson.

Mothertongue is split into three major parts, each recorded with a different vocal artist and making use of the human voice in a particular way. Continue Reading »

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SAM AMIDON: All Is Well (Bedroom Community)

themilkman on Oct 17th 2007 02:10 pm

Samamidon: All Is Well

SAM AMIDON
All Is Well
HVALUR4CD/LP
Bedroom Community 2007
10 Tracks. 47mins49secs

In just over a year, Icelandic imprint Bedroom Community, headed by Björk and Bonnie Prince Billy (amongst others) collaborator Valgeir Sigurðsson, have distilled some of the most interesting records around, first with Nico Muhly’s delicate Speaks Volumes, then with Ben Frost’s textural Theory Of Machines, and, more recently with Sigurðsson’s own stellar pop opus Ekvilibrium.

Joining them is folk singer Sam Amidon, a twenty-six year old musician from Brattleboro, Vermont, who currently lives in New York. He shares his time between his solo project and various bands, including Doveman, Stars Like Fleas and The Amidons, a band formed by his parents and dedicated to traditional dance and music forms. Continue Reading »

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