Singer and Composer Laura Perrudin Unveils Video for INKS and Makes Her US Live Debut in NYC
French harpist, singer and composer Laura PERRUDIN has had both an unusual and eclectic career. Brought up on a diet of jazz from childhood, she studied classical music in addition to composing and producing a wide array of genres including electronic and traditional music, soul and hip-hop using her home studio, and trained with many musicians from her birth region of Brittany to New York and Paris. "I decided to play the harp when I was very young", Laura says. "I had big sleep problems as a child and my parents' CD of Irish harp was the only thing that helped me to sleep, thanks to its deep vibration. Then, because I was bathing into many different kinds of music including jazz, hip hop and electronic music, I realized that the harp did not allow me to play the music I was listening to, for many reasons. That is why I began to sing more and more, to produce electronic music in my room and to play a little bit of piano." Her mission became to open up the possibilities of the harp to a richer harmonic language, and her quest paid off in 2008 when harp maker Philippe Volant custom-built for her a chromatic pedal-less harp with a single row of strings. In 2014 she asked Volant to make an electric version of the chromatic harp, which she has played ever since. This innovative instrument has allowed her to give free rein to the sinuous harmonies and rich soundscapes of her unclassifiable compositions.
PERRUDIN recently released her sophomore album, "Poisons & Antidotes" on Volatine Records in Europe to an enthusiastic response from the media, and she is happy to announce that she will be making her US live debut on 1/13 in NYC at The Bitter End during Winter Jazz Festival. She will be joined by acclaimed chamber-pop singer/songwriter/guitarist Becca Stevens on several songs. Seeing her harp as both an orchestra and a drum kit, in her compelling live performances, Laura creates a powerful personal universe utilizing an arsenal of a laptops, sound-effect pedals and multi-track loops. She says, "I am very excited to play in NY for the first time because I spent a few months there in 2012 and felt how deeply inspiring and stimulating the city was. I have been listening to so many musicians coming from there that I am very happy to be a part of this rich musical landscape for one night."
Mastered by Valgeir Sigurðsson at Greenhouse Studio in Reykjavík (Björk, Feist, Camille, Damon Albarn), "Poisons & Antidotes" received "4 Stars" from "The Guardian's" John Lewis who raved, "Perrudin makes every sound here, using her voice and a custom-made chromatic harp: her vocals are often multi-layered into audacious harmonies, while the harp can sound like any number of instruments.... Perrudin's strong melodies and poetic imagery make each song uniquely compelling."
One of the highlights of "Poisons & Antidotes" is the track "Inks". Laura recently filmed a video for the song directed by Damien Bonnaire and Director of Photography Antoine Waterkeyn.
You can check out the video here:
Here's a link to stream the track:
The first single from the new album is "The Ceiling's Maze", which was described by "The Guardian" as "...Erykah Badu-ish neo soul...where Perrudin's harp sounds like D'Angelo's guitar, playing clipped phrases over a sluggish J Dilla-style vocal breakbeat."
You can check out a video of a live version of "The Ceiling's Maze" here:
Here's a streaming link to listen to "The Ceiling's Maze":
In PERRUDIN's music, she uses her voice like an instrument, and believes that the harp and voice are an extension of the other. Upon releasing her debut album, "Impressions", in 2015, "Les Inrockuptibles" proclaimed, "Besides submitting texts by Yeats, Joyce and Shakespeare to her vocal and harmonic experiments, the young iconoclast blends jazz with contemporary melodic lines, r'n'b grooves and rich harmonic structures. It is stunning to listen to the thousand games of a tightrope artist, her cheerful and spontaneous radicalism, definitely modern." "France Inter Paris Radio" wrote, "It's rather as if Björk had chanced upon Herbie Hancock in a Dublin pub. Laura Perrudin is only at the beginning of her artistic carer, but she has already redefined the framework of the harp in jazz and we are sure that her singular universe will become an example."
As she told Emily Palmer from "London Jazz News", "Making music is really close to painting. It's about many things meeting at a one point...My goal is to take very personal elements and to transform them into universal material."
Watch the video here: