The EartH Theatre stands out in the cultural landscape as a multi-artistic space that, through its programming, prioritises artists, individuals and groups who attempt to innovate, progress and collaborate their craft to push creativity forwards. At one of his last events EartH Theatre presented live three emerging performers from international scene.
Earth in Dalston establishes mood with its cavernous quality and exposed concrete walls. Hatis Noit could be dwarfed by the large stage, but instead she becomes its vital focal point. She begins with a “Shhh” which she then loops in with a choral accompaniment – all underpinned with an industrial hum. Looping and layering her own voice with a dual mic setup and various peddles. Nothing else; yet it soars. This culminates with “Inori” (Japanese for prayer) which has a heightened impact because she uses a wave noise, washing around her as her voice soars further yet, this is a field recording from Fukushima and dedicated to those who lost their lives. It becomes a powerful prayer being grounded in something that is not just a hypothetical concept, but something palpably real. It feels like a spiritual successor to Kate Bush’s Ninth Wave concept.
Loscil takes the stage and occupies a table in the centre with just a colourful control pad. The glow feels reminiscent of his new album “Colours of Air” (In collaboration with Lawrence English). The backdrop behind him begins blank and morphs into life as his ambient sound begins to swell and expand. Beginning as a raindrop clicking within a bell, backed by just a white orb. It could also be a Geiger counter. Trees then come through as a gentle melody underpinned by a blanket of base emerges. It feels like an emerging nature. This culminates in a more industrial sound backed by a red orb. It feels like a deliberate tension between nature and the man-made, reminiscent of the concepts that underpin his work e.g. “Sea Island” vs his album “Submers” where every track is named after a submarine (ending with the haunting “Kursk”). Morgan often describes one of music’s most powerful capabilities is that of being able to play with time itself. This is embodied in this transportive set, where as it culminates, its hard to tell whether 5 minutes or 5 hours has elapsed. The audience loses itself, each with their own subjective journey.
Chihei Hatakeyama sits amidst an unwavering backdrop of spindly trees from below, amidst a stark white sky. Again, nature is inseparable from his sound, he describes how the sea near where he grew up in Fujisawa is something ever present in his music with the view being “part of me”. He still does field recording there. The backdrop evokes the delicate layered sound he
creates with layer upon layer without any abrupt changes in direction. In his eyes rhythm and beat often hinder melody. He magnifies various elements; he has talked of being inspired by the Japanese concept of “Wabi Sabi” of accepting imperfection and valuing it e.g seeing the beauty in some discarded bamboo and using this concept to hear sound differently. You can hear this in the way that even his guitar doesn’t sound like a guitar. His set is akin to an
We leave the space, privileged to have witnessed three masters of their craft in their own unique way. Each having weaved a different but valuable experience.
“We bring together both the leading, rising and most important talents of all fields under one roof and provide a vital new home for this in London.” Evolutionary Arts Hackney
EartH in Dalston / Evolutionary Arts Hackney
Artist: Chihei Hatakeyama / @chiheihatakeyama
Loscil / @loscil & Hatis Notis / @hatis_noit
Words: Jamie Macleod Bryden / @jamiemacleodbryden
Editor: Maria Abramenko / @mariabramenko
Assistant: Alisia Marcacci / @miabrowe
Location: EartH Theatre / @earthackney