Fis & Rob Thorne
New Zealand duo Fis (Oliver Peryman) and Rob Thorne (Ngāti Tumutumu) emerged recently as a completely unique sonic project straddling electronica and contemporary indigenous acoustics. The pair first performed at HAU 2 in Berlin for CTM’s New Geographies edition in 2016. Within a year, they released their debut full-length Clear Stones on Bristol’s respected Subtext Recordings. The record was constructed almost entirely from recordings of Thorne’s tāonga pūoro, such as the pūtōrino, pūtatara, pūrerehua, porotiti and rehu.
Clear Stones explores a vast spectrum between unprocessed, raw acoustics and deep processing of the instruments, seeking both innermost and outermost reaches of their potential. Addressing the album with The Wire, Fis said, “We’ve zoomed in on the edges of these instruments’ voices. So there are moments where what might sound like distortion is actually resonant saliva in the pūtōrino and the pūtātara. Rob’s breathing in between notes isn’t hidden, it’s accentuated, so are the last flutters and super low frequencies of a pūrerehua as it dies away… We’ve played around too with real and surreal senses of acoustic space, questioning these distinctions.”
Perhaps more succinctly, Norman Records had the following to say on the album: “[E]very detail is meticulous and compelling. Fucking listen to this.”
Starting with Athens’ Borderline Festival, 2017’s tour for Clear Stones had the duo working playfully with an extremely wide dynamic range for the live setting. Thorne – a master improvisor with more than two decades performance experience – often abandoned the stage to weave his way through audiences in moments of raw, intimate, unamplified play, ducking in and out of the pure sonic force of Fis’ amplified tāonga pūoro treatments.
The pair recently inaugurated Fis’ new label Saplings Records with the EP Ngā Parirau o te Kārearea. In keeping with Saplings’ physical format of ecological restoration, the 5 track EP has funded over 6500 trees within a month of its release date, with 40 planted for every individual sale.
Clear Stones on Bandcamp
For booking enquiries, contact Lisa Blanning
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