Hannah Thiem - "The Finding" (audio) (Premiere)

by Brice Ezell

20 May 2014

PopMatters is pleased to present the enigmatic "The Finding", the third single from her avant-garde EP BRYM.

Songwriters such as Emily Wells have demonstrated the wonderful, eclectic things that can be done with a violin when brought into the mold of popular genres like electronic, indie, and pop. Few, if any, however, have the daring demonstrated by Hannah Thiem, who in her music draws on influences that span the entire globe, including the music of Scandinavia, the Middle East, and Eastern Europe. “The Finding,” the third single to be released from her upcoming EP BRYM, demonstrates this musical multiculturalism on many fronts. Thiem’s lyrics, captured in full by her gorgeous voice, are a mélange of “Icelandic, Roma-influenced, and partly invented” languages. The brooding, Massive Attack-esque mood of “The Finding” brings together Middle Eastern instrumentation and Eastern European melody. Thiem’s dazzling violin weaves haunting melodies atop the insistent electronic drumbeat. By the time the five minutes of this tune have run its course, one could say a kind of mystical journey has unfolded.
Thiem describes “The Finding” as “the most uniquely composed” track off of BRYM...

“I wrote a foundation bed of the song, took that to the studio and improvised vocals and violin in about four takes total over the five-minute loop. I had Isabel Castellvi on cello do the same. Then, it was just a matter of cutting and slicing up the pieces to create a song that ebbed and flowed in all the right places. I really enjoyed that process; it was organic and fresh with some preconception, but allowing the inspiration to run stronger than the studio effect of being under a microscope and on the clock, which can sometimes inhibit the best work.”

BRYM will be released on June 3.


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