Anne Müller - Heliopause

Format: LP
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The Berlin-based cellist and composer - and Sea Change Festival perfromer - Anne Müller is here with her long-awaited debut solo album Heliopause, out on Erased Tapes. Heliopause follows several Erased Tapes releases featuring Müller, including her celebrated collaboration with Nils Frahm 7Fingers, and feature credits on Lubomyr Melnyk’s Fallen Trees, Ben Lukas Boysen’s Spells, Nils Frahm’s All Melody, as well as Erased Tapes’ 5th and 10th anniversary box sets. In fact, a glance at Muller’s Discogs boasts credits on over 60 releases since she began recording in 2007. A solo record in every sense of the word, Müller wrote, recorded, arranged and produced Heliopause. The title track and album are named after the boundary where the sun’s wind ceases to have influence. It is ultimately, the border of our solar system. The name struck a chord with Müller since the two voyagers sent on an exploratory mission 42 years ago, just crossed the Heliopause this year and entered into the next solar system losing power from our own sun. “Heliopause is the newest of all the pieces. It marks the end of a long journey but also the start of voyages to explore strange new worlds” — Müller recognised herself in this moment, not only approaching the same age, but also breaking new ground; having relied on collaborating with so many other stars and now venturing into the unknown with a solo record. Boldly opening the album is the striking Being Anne, which sees Müller embrace her new-found freedom with the most experimental piece on the record, placing the cello in a completely new context. Playing a broken down old piano with a plectrum for the melody and scratching parts of the key mechanism to produce a rhythm, the once lost instrument is given a new lease of life among looped cello drones and drums. “I used the sounds of a tiny piano I got from my mother that she bought when she was a student and didn’t have any money. Later it stood for years in our little summer garden house, where I practiced on it constantly for my piano lessons. Even though it’s old and not in the best best shape, I love the way it sounds and call it my little circus piano”. The atmospheric swells of noise on Being Anne are juxtaposed beautifully with the most stripped back and exposed track on the record, Solo? Repeat!. The J.S. Bach and Gaspar Cassado-influenced piece is Müller attempting solo in its purest form; unaccompanied cello. Lead single Nummer 2 is so titled as it’s the second piece Müller ever wrote. A mixture of old sounds and newer structures, its repeated arpeggio conjures drama and displays Müller’s dexterous production abilities. Drifting Circles meanwhile provides the album’s climax, amid and orchestra of looped cellos and vocals. Referencing the minimalism of Steve Reich and Philip Glass, it builds to a crescendo of harmonics allowing the cello to sore, as it crosses the border from minor to major. Heliopause crosses these physical and invisible borders throughout, sending the typically classical instrument to new and uncharted territory.

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