Hand to Earth / Australian Art Orchestra.
Hand to Earth is a call to open ears: eluding genre,
traversing continents and fusing ancient and contemporary. At its
heart are Yolgnu manikay (song cycles), a 40,000+ year-old oral
tradition from South East Arnhem Land, northern Australia. These
songs exist to cross vast time and space, to continuously make
the continuous - known as raki, the spirit that pulls all
together, all performers all
Hand to Earth developed during an Australian Art Orchestra (AAO) residency in the remote highlands of Tasmania. Yolgnu songman, Daniel Wilfred, and Korean vocalist, Sunny Kim, formed an effortless rapport; their combined vocal approaches expressing a deeply human commonality whilst also invoking raw
elemental forces. Trumpeter and composer, Peter Knight draws upon his minimalist influence to create a bed of electronic atmospheres that meld beautifully with these contrasting voices. The combination of Aviva Endean and David Wilfred's evocative sounds transport the listener to previously unimagined sonic plains. Together the ensemble wields these mystical elements with a masterful improvisational touch that AAO is famous for.
Daniel sings in Wägilak language, in his 'own', the old people's and his son's voices, as the carrier of knowledge and the caller of raki. He has collaborated with the AAO for many years sharing his song with the world. As he explains: "You're not singing from your head, you're singing from your heart…Working with the Orchestra, I can share my culture with other musicians, tell them my stories, sing my songs. They learn from me, and I learn from them."
Contents note: Nunguryu Nunguryu -- Water Song -- Star Song -- Birrik Birrik -- Guguk -- Gadayka/Grenadilla -- Old People.
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