Monday, 18 April 2016

Heather Leigh and Asiq Nargile to play London this August!

We're extremely excited for this meeting of minds!
 Upset The Rhythm presents…


Thursday 4 August
The Forge, 3-7 Delancey Street, Camden, NW1 7NL
7pm | £10 |
HEATHER LEIGH is the daughter of a coal miner, weaving a trail from West Virginia to Texas and now residing in Scotland. Heather travels the vast unexplored reaches of pedal steel guitar. Her playing is as physical as it is phantom, combining spontaneous compositions with a feel for the full interaction of flesh with hallucinatory power sources. With a rare combination of sensitivity and strength, Leigh’s steel mainlines sanctified slide guitar and deforms it using hypnotic tone-implosions, juggling walls of bleeding amp tone with choral vocal constructs and wrenching single note ascensions.

In late 2015, Heather Leigh released her first proper studio album, I Abused Animal on Stephen O’Malley & Peter Rehberg’s Ideologic Organ/Editions Mego labels to widespread acclaim. Renowned as a fearless free improviser, I Abused Animal is a breakthrough work showcasing Leigh’s songwriting prowess, foregrounding her stunning voice and her innovations for the pedal steel guitar. Warmly recorded in a secret location in the English countryside, the album transmutes the power of her captivating live performances to a studio setting, capturing her tactile playing in full clarity while making devastating use of volume and space. Heather Leigh explores themes of abuse, sexual instinct, vulnerability, memory, shadow, fantasy, cruelty and projection across the album’s psychedelic hymnals. At times the intimacy of the recordings makes you feel like she’s singing directly into your ear, playing just for you.

ASIQ NARGILE aka Nargile Mehtiyeva was born in Tbilisi and is now based in the Borcali region of Southern Georgia. She has been playing saz (long-neck lute) and singing since the age of 15. Fluent in Azerbaijani, Georgian, and Russian, Nargile represents the cosmopolitan heritage of old Tbilisi, a city once known as a meeting point for multilingual aşıq bards who would travel through the region serving as conduits for news, ideas, music and culture. A powerful solo performer, her vocal recital of epic folk poetry is by turns ecstatic and deeply expressive, and is interspersed with bursts of virtuosic, highly ornamented saz.

Equally comfortable performing moving laments or upbeat folk dances, Nargile is currently the only female aşıq living and performing in the ethnic Azeri region of Georgia, and has been teaching the art to new generations. Thanks to the efforts of The Sayat Nova Project,  a non-profit group aiming to help preserve and promote the diverse musical dialects of the Caucasus, European audiences can now experience the elusive, hypnotic beauty of Nargile’s music for themselves. A recording of her live performance at Cafe OTO will be released soon, following on from a successful UK tour with kindred folk channeller Richard Dawson.

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