Based out of Chicago, Em Spel is the musical project of songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Emma Hospelhorn. Although only recently embarking on music under the Em Spel moniker, Emma is something of a regular on the Chicago scene, known both for her work as a member of the avant-classical group Ensemble Dal Niente and as a musician for hire, playing an array of instruments on an eclectic bunch of records by the likes of V.V. Lightbody, Advance Base and Hollows. Calling in some well-earned favours, Emma created her debut album The Carillon Towers out at the end of the month, and today she’s premiering the latest single from it, Names.
Names is a fine introduction to Em Spel’s musical world, it enters on a tight vocal harmony, “what’s your name, why can I remember it?”. From there around a loping guitar line, courtesy of V.V. Lightbody, it seems to hit a trance like state, somewhere between the 60’s psych-folk boom and the distinctly modern creative complexity of Loma.
Throughout the track, the backing seems to almost organically shift, rippling like a pebble skimming over a stream via waves of processed loops of flute, chanting, occultish backing vocals and even a delightful blast of droning, low-end French Horns. Intriguing, enchanting and not quite like anything you’ve ever heard before, as introductions go, Names couldn’t be much more exciting.
The Carillon Towers is out May 20th. For more information on Em Spel visit http://www.emmahospelhorn.com/.