Emily Wells performing Symphony 1 In the Barrel of a Gun live in KRCL studios in Salt Lake City, Utah (12 November 2008)
A classical trained violinist who has been playing since the age of 4, Emily Wells is a multi-instrumentalist who also plays the piano, banjo, guitar, drums, beat machines and glockenspiel!
My ears pricked up as soon as I heard Emily and her distinctive style. Influenced by jazz, hip-hop and Nina Simone, Emily carves out a niche of classical music twisted with a modern touch that perfectly suits her sweet voice. She sings, composes and produces her own music and released her earlier music independently even though record labels have been knocking on her door since the age of 17.
Emily has recently teamed up with another purveyor of cool by the name of Dan The Automator (aka Nathaniel Merriweather) to form Pillowfight! Also a classically trained violinist Dan is a producer-sampler extraordinaire famous for music from Gorillaz, Deltron 3030, Lovage and Handsome Boy Modelling School!
Introduced by Dan’s fellow band member Kid Koala, Emily was already a big fan of Dan The Automator before they started collaborating for Pillowfight and didn’t hesitate to accept Dan’s offer.
Obviously with the blend of these two powerful forces the result is electronic in nature and very easy to listen to, Used to Think and latest single Get Down in particular. It’s a pity they didn’t retain the original name for their pairing which was “Trolling for Goth Girls”.
Earlier this year Emily spent some time in Korea to work on a new song for a soundtrack to the Park Chan-Wook film Stoker (Park’s first English-language film). Becomes the Color was the trippy result which was written from the perspective of a character in the film, India Stoker.
The Stoker film script was actually written by the actor Wentworth Miller (the clever brother with the silly map tattoo in Prison Break), who wrote the script under a pseudonym in case Hollywood wouldn’t take him seriously… or in case they watched Prison Break!
Emily originally hails from Amarillo, Texas but is currently based in New York after spending several years in Los Angeles. She penned a love song to ‘Los Angeles‘ on her new album Mama Acoustic Recordings which will be released on 11 June 2013. The album will be a raw and acoustic interpretation of songs from her 2012 album Mama.
If Symphony 1 In the Barrel of Gun tickles your fancy give The Symphonies: Dreams Memories & Parties a try. The album contains 9 additional symphonies (including the excellent Symphony 6 Fair Thee Well & the Requiem Mix) to feed your pretty little ears.
I’m now off to buy myself a glockenspiel…
Other samples you might enjoy: