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Upcoming shows: Alice Boman... Skinny Lister... Brown Brogues... Jesca Hoop... Old Sea Brigade... Rachael Dadd... The Happy Soul... James Yorkston & Nina Persson... Stars... Siv Jakobsen... Weyes Blood... Jesse Malin + Tommy Stinson... Coruja Jones... Rozi Plain... Sweet Baboo... Kerala Dust... Sophie Jamieson... Will Sheff / Okkervil River... SLUG... Beans on Toast... Honey Harper... The Dream Syndicate... Rachel Baiman... Anna B Savage... Joshua Burnside... His Lordship... Unthank : Smith... Ailbhe Reddy... Neil Cowley... Eric Bibb... The Beths... The Burning Hell...

When: 7.30pm on Tuesday 1 November 2022
Where: The Stoller Hall, Hunts Bank, Manchester M3 1DA

We’re delighted to be working with Dustin O’Halloran for the first time!

A brilliant, Oscar-nominated composer and pianist whose music is marked by a lightness of touch and graceful, lyrical sensibility, it’s been far too long since Dustin O’Halloran last toured as a solo artist. A full decade on from his last extended outing – a heavyweight triple-bill alongside friends Jóhann Jóhannsson and Hauschka – Dustin follows up last year’s wonderful Silfur album, his debut for Deutsche Grammophon and first new album in ten years, with a rare set of European dates that should not be missed.

Born in Los Angeles and currently based between L.A. and Reykjavik, O’Halloran’s music is elegant and airy, full of warmth, light and emotion. Influenced by the clean, spacious piano music of composers like Satie, Debussy, Chopin and Schumann, it is occasionally expanded and rendered thoroughly modern through a restrained palette of strings and warm, electronic textures. ‘These days I find it hard to listen to music that’s really dense,’ he notes. ‘Because I feel like we’re in this age of so much information. So I gravitate towards simplicity more and more.’

A self-taught pianist, O’Halloran drifted away from the instrument in the mid 1990s, performing in indie band Devics, before a 2000 move to rural Italy saw him rediscover the piano and an enhanced sense of space. Two volumes of Piano Solos, released on Bella Union in 2004 to 2006, were followed by 2011’s Lumiere, released on FatCat’s 130701 imprint, which saw him attaining new creative heights and connecting to a roster and scene that was rapidly picking up heat.

Between Piano Solos and Lumiere, Dustin had begun carving a niche for himself composing music for moving image. Starting with Sofia Coppola’s Marie Antoinette (2006), a rapid ascent in the film world included scores for Drake Doremus’ Like Crazy (2011), Breathe In (2013), George Tillman Jr.’s The Hate U Give (2018) and Francis Lee’s Ammonite (2020). In 2015 he won an Emmy for his title theme to the Amazon comedy drama Transparent, whilst 2016’s Lion score, the first of several written in collaboration with Volker Bertelmann (aka Hauschka), was nominated for Oscar, Golden Globe, BAFTA and Critics Choice awards.

Around the same time as Lumiere, Dustin began to work in A Winged Victory For The Sullen, a hugely successful ambient-orchestral collaboration with Stars Of The Lid’s Adam Wiltzie. Following their 2011 debut, the duo released four studio and two soundtrack albums, scored choreographer Wayne McGregor’s critically acclaimed dance piece Atomos and toured through the US and Europe, including a prestigious 2015 performance at London’s Royal Albert Hall as part of the BBC Proms.

Caught up in the growing success of both A Winged Victory and his film work, and with his ability to play piano for prolonged periods limited by a spinal injury, O’Halloran appeared inexplicably absent as a solo artist as the huge wave of interest in contemporary piano music broke in the mid-2010s. His solo work remained widely heard beneath film and TV and was notably used in Nike’s viral Dream Crazy advert featuring Colin Kaepernick, the NFL quarterback whose kneeling protests during the National Anthem polarised opinion. Yet, over the past decade, Dustin has performed under his own name at just a handful of one-off shows and festivals. Signing to Deutsche Grammophon in 2021, the release of Silfur, his first new album since Lumiere, saw Dustin finally take a step back into the solo spotlight, revisiting and reinterpreting a number of earlier works alongside his first standalone compositions in years. And now, finally, the chance to see this wonderful pianist in concert.

Backing Dustin on the tour will be Clarice Jensen (cello) and Yuki Numata Resnick (violin).

Tour support comes from Clarice Jensen. Clarice Jensen is a composer and cellist based in Brooklyn, NYC who graduated with a BM and MM from the Juilliard School. As a solo artist, Clarice has developed a distinctive compositional approach, improvising and layering her cello through shifting loops and a chain of electronic effects to open out and explore a series of rich, drone-based sound fields. Pulsing, visceral and full of colour, her work is deeply immersive, marked by a wonderful sense of restraint and an almost hallucinatory clarity. Meditative yet with a sculptural sharpness and rigour that sets it apart from the swathe of New Age/DIY droners, she has forged a very elegant and precise vision.

Her music has been described by Self-Titled as ‘heavily processed, incredibly powerful neo-classical pieces that seem to come straight from another astral plane’; by Boomkat as ‘languorously void-touching ideas, scaling and sustaining a sublime tension’; whilst Bandcamp remarked upon ‘a kaleidoscope of pulsing movement rich in acoustic beating and charged with other psychoacoustic effects, constantly shifting in density and viscous timbre’. Jensen’s third album, Esthesis, is released on the 130701 label on 21 October.

Book tickets now via Seetickets.com and Stollerhall.com

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