Elsiris releases debut album Imprints
Jasmien Geijsels (piano) and Pierre-Antoine (flugelhorn) met during their jazz studies at the Royal Conservatory of Brussels and, together with a former drummer, they formed a close trio, connecting instantly. In this period the foundation of Elsiris was laid and in 2020 they got selected for the semi-finals of the Jazz contest Mechelen. Two years later there was a shift with Élie Goulème taking over the drum seat. Again the chemistry between them was immediate. Words weren’t necessary to convey and shape the musical ideas they were able to create instantly. In August 2022 they hit the studio to record their debut album with renowned pianist and composer Diederik Wissels as their producer.
About the music and musicians
Elsiris’ repertoire primarily features original compositions by the band’s founder and pianist, Jasmien. Her melancholic, sometimes fragile, melodies and skilful use of space and silence transport the listener through a captivating musical journey that transcends time. However, her sound can also be piercingly powerful when the moment calls for it. Pierre-Antoine Savoyat’s warm sound on the flugelhorn in combination with his unique electronic effects create the most beautiful colours, soundscapes and depth. Élie Goulème’s drumming complements the band’s sound, offering subtle as well as solid and lively rhythms. Together they form a close-knit entity where improvisation can be playful as well as profound, resulting in a delicate and immersive experience.
Quote by Diederik Wissels about Elsiris and their music:
“A marvellous journey into a wide open space full of colours and images, and silence as powerful as music itself. Profound emotions will accompany the far away dreamscapes. It is a completely mature and original project and among the most beautiful music these days available.” ~ Diederik Wissels ~
About the album Imprints
With each song on the album, Elsiris leaves an imprint on its listener. Some compositions carry the name of a fictional character, who have their own layered personality that continues to evolve just like a human of flesh and blood. Do they remain a mystery or can they be fathomed over time? Other compositions embody a deep connection with nature, the feeling of being a part of something bigger, as well as a connection between people.
Elsiris had the privilege to have Diederik Wissels and Tsai-Wen Hui join them as guest musicians. Diederik Wissels’ electronic soundscapes adds an extra layer of depth to Helena II while vocalist Tsai-Wen Hui transforms Mathilde and lures you in the story with her voice.
About some compositions
Words and text are an important part of Jasmien’s artistry. For Mathilde she was inspired by Sea, sea!, a composition by Susanne Abbuehl in which she sings a fragment of James Joyce’s Finnegans wake. It intrigued Jasmien to write a text inspired by this. Using words that are recognisable in English but when listening closely not making sense. She asked the singer Wen-Hui Tsai to perform this part as if she was telling a story to a child.
Although this fictive child isn’t able to understand the words, it should still grasp the essence of the story by the way it is told. That way the story becomes universal no matter what language is spoken. Points of compass, an intimate and tender ballad, depicts the lengths one goes through for a loved one. At the same time it paints a scenery of desolateness and vastness. The title of the piece Window weather is a literal translation of the Icelandic word ‘gluggaveður’, referring to weather that looks pleasant when viewed from indoors but is actually cold or inclement when experienced outside. To open en eye and close another, is again a literal translation of this time, a Chinese Mandarin saying (睁一只眼，闭一只眼) meaning to turn a blind eye to something. A dear friend taught Jasmien some Mandarin phrases and words. This sentence lingered with her because of the vivid mental image it created. The compositions embodying a female character, each got their name carefully chosen. Deciding on a name sometimes took weeks, other times one day.
About SONNA Records
SONNA Records was founded by singer Sanne Rambags with the aim of providing a platform for musicians who share a passion for adventurous yet tranquil music. The label offers a space where the pure essence of life becomes tangible. Expressing your own story in music, using your intuition, is a way to create a deep connection with your inner strength and thereby inspire others. SONNA Records believes that our true nature is our greatest strength.