Maya Shenfeld Shares New Single “Body, Electric”
Debut album In Free Fall is out January 28th, 2022 via Thrill Jockey Records
Berlin-based composer Maya Shenfeld has shared the cascading, balletic new track “Body, Electric” from her forthcoming debut album In Free Fall, out January 28th, 2022. On “Body, Electric,” Shenfeld employs a whirlpool of willowy arpeggiated synthesizers atop the ebb and flow of thickly layered organic bass tones. In her use of delicate counterpoint, textural variation and sonata form, Shenfeld contemplates the physical manifestations of meditation as well as romanticized, often gendered notions typically associated with classical music and “artistic genius.”
Shenfeld elaborates on the piece: “I composed “Body, Electric” inspired by conversations with a friend about Wagner, classical music, the philosophical romantic notion of artistic “genius”, and gender earlier this year. The title, “Body, electric”, speaks of some of the physical experiences I’ve had while meditating. It’s written in a classical sonata form, and something about this, about functional harmony, resulted in a somewhat melodramatic movement, crescendos, peaks. I remember cycling back from the sessions at the studio, while the city was completely abandoned, listening back to various versions I’d recorded that day, feeling slightly amused by the sheer romanticism and climatic nature of the track.”
This rhythmic loop of notes emerges and initiates the first sequence to this engrossing ensemble. Maya fuses these bold and distinct tones and soundwaves together and the energy bounces from the soaring notes and provides this intoxicating ambiance.
As the loops progress and the introduction to key passages which are carefully placed in the arrangement come to life, this body of work starts to showcase this real push of emotion. Through the structure and the choice of elongated waves and surge of melody, Maya starts to sculpt this immersive landscape, the journey begins to feel adventurous and moving both in sync with one another. Maya Shenfeld delivers this impressive instrumentation that moulds into this harrowing display, affection oozes from the venture we all embrace from start to finish. Although the bright notes shine, it’s the brooding intensity that adds this expressive contrast into the dynamic and complex composition. “Body, Electric” sparks this raw affection, the listener feels alone with the musician, drawn into the midst of this voyage and able to appreciate the cathartic outcome of the single.
Maya Shenfeld’s music is as powerfully evocative as it is strikingly intimate. Through a mastery of sound sculpting and visionary approach to composition Shenfeld has established herself as one of the most vital voices in Berlin’s New Music scene. Her work exists in liminal spaces, collapsing the boundaries between electronic synthesis and organic sound as it draws equally from classical tradition and underground experimentalism. Each aspect of her output, from site-specific sound installations to works for new music ensembles and even playing guitar in punk bands, combines an astute technical prowess with an authentic, tangible expression of soul. In Free Fall merges the grand vision of orchestral music with the granularity and intimacy of deep listening, exploring a tension between immaculately structured compositional architecture and the sheer joy of noise, grain and feedback.
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