Gabi Maas & Alice Allen

These are tunes with an intrepid spirit about them, and we hope you enjoy the adventure of their twists and turns as it unfolds.

 

The tunes are a varied bunch, picked up at festivals, sessions and archive collections in Sweden, Finland, Ireland and the UK. But though they come from different places and times, they have a few things in common. They all share a spirit of adventure, twisting their way along quirky harmonic paths. Their shapes remind us of natural landscapes we love, or the places where we learned them. Some are angular, some broad and open, some solitary. And they all inspire us to explore the textures and soundworlds our instruments can create together.

 

In the Scandinavian fiddle traditions where many of them originate, the string duo is a world in itself. With one on melody and the other inventing and reinventing a harmony line, the instruments tangle with each other at close quarters. Each of our pairings does this differently: whereas nyckelharpa and cello compete for the bassline and richest overtones, violin and cello have to be coaxed into the middle by playing low down on one and high up on the other. At times they even cross over and swap roles. The densely interlocked chords that emerge from these blends often sound more like a small string group than a duo. Two voices: so intimate and simple, but always more than the sum of their parts.

You can listen and purchase the album here.