The Earth With Her Crowns by Laura Cannell

The Earth With Her Crowns, vinyl record, designed by Atelier Dyakova. Image by Atelier Dyakova.
The Earth With Her Crowns, vinyl record, designed by Atelier Dyakova. Image by Atelier Dyakova.

Our latest commission by composer and performer Laura Cannell  a music album The Earth With Her Crowns is out now, marking five years since the passing of our founder and director Jules Wright.

The Earth With Her Crowns is a set of ten tracks improvised and recorded in single takes in our former home, Wapping Hydraulic Power Station, London, over two days in February and March 2019. This is our final project in response to the iconic building that defined our commissioning for over two decades. Laura’s music captures the building’s unique resonance.

The Earth With Her Crowns is available as a digital download and a limited edition vinyl record with sleeve designed by Atelier Dyakova and printed by PUSH, London.

The first 150 vinyl purchases are accompanied by a free hard copy of our print publication Resonance 1 featuring  new writing commissions by Gareth Evans, Alia Trabucco Zerán (with translation by Sophie Hughes) and Laura Cannell, as well as images by artist Karen Stuke.

Standing on thresholds in the archways between spaces and under the suspended stairs with low notes and high notes flying I played in the moment, allowing the sound to branch off like ancient waterways, I was led by the acoustics of the space to sounds that were self-sustaining, free flowing and changeable. Clear glass panes reflected and returned my offerings of string and air, uttered from fingers and lungs.

Tonnes of water once passed through here to power London, and the space is never silent, the sound of the living city outside occasionally entering through porous brick, steel and glass. I found it to be a proud structure, and it was an honour to hear its responses to my questions.                   

Laura Cannell, March 2019

The Earth With Her Crowns

The Earth With Her Crowns
Waters Deep Cathedral
A Space For Dreaming
After You Left
Having Been Breathed Out

Black Sleep of Night**
Someone Will Remember us in Another Time**
Memory and Desire
We Used to Keep Bees in There
Until I End My Song

Laura Cannell – Violins (Octave & Overbow) / Double Recorders / Voice

**with special guests:
Jennifer Lucy Allan – Horn / Mini Accordion / Voice
André Bosman – Suspended Stairs / Fiddle

Recorded & produced by Laura Cannell
Mastered by Mark Beazley at Trace Mastering
Published by MuteSong
Commissioned & funded by The Wapping Project

Laura Cannell at Wapping Hydraulic Power Station, March 2019. © Thomas Zanon-Larcher
Laura Cannell at Wapping Hydraulic Power Station, March 2019. © Thomas Zanon-Larcher

Laura Cannell

Straddling the worlds of experimental, chamber, folk, early & medieval music, Laura’s semi-composed, semi-improvised compositions draw on the emotional influences of the landscape and explore the spaces between early and experimental music that is rooted in but not tethered to the past. Cannell is an artist whose original and singular vision sets her apart from her contemporaries, whilst her music exists as a culturally vital exploration of the link between medieval, traditional and modern musical idioms.

Laura has released five solo albums since 2014, successfully carving out a unique path with her work, receiving critical acclaim from the contemporary music press and regularly being included in numerous Album of the Year lists (including The Guardian, MOJO, BBC Radio 3’s Late Junction, The Wire and The Quietus). Recent projects include creating music for film (EMI & more), broadcast work for BBC Radio 3, “Sing As The Crow Flies” (2019) a duo album with Polly Wright which was The Guardian’s Album Folk of the Month, tours with the cellist Lori Goldston (Earth, Nirvana) & collaborations with This Heat drummer Charles Hayward & Mira Calix, as well as commissions for Hampton Court Palace, The Immix Ensemble at Tate Liverpool, Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra & The Zuckerman Museum of Contemporary Art (US). As well as live performances throughout the UK & Europe.