Her Harbour at RBC Bluesfest

August 8th, 2016 by  |  Published in Concerts

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There were two instances at RBC Bluesfest which were rare, magical… otherworldly. The first was at the Barney Danson Theatre on the evening of July 13th – the performance by Her Harbour. Voice, lyrics, and music materialized like diaphanous mysts, enveloping the capacity audience to reveal glimpses of the labyrinthine paths of her secret garden.

There were just three compositions to Gabrielle Giguere‘s show – each whist, intimate – like Faerie footfalls on summer moss nomadically pacing from reserved cryptic reticence to unguarded nakedness… only to return once again to discrete cloaks of allegory.

Accompanied here by Merganzer (eminent violinist Mika Posen) and her own measured autoharp, Gabrielle’s vocal intonation and phrasing sketched the narrative of This Age from her album, Winter’s Ghosts, to commence the concert…

Oh I hope that I don’t meet him
even if it’s on the sly
cause that boy he has a riffle
and pity isn’t of his time

Should I ever meet that silver barrel
I’ll surely wonder why oh why
I ever left that line pole
and forgot what was mine oh mine

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Two newer songs were presented here (…and possibly for a forthcoming album) – Below Breaths and the absorbing and eloquent narrative, In Nude In Fog And River. As with all her creations, these two pieces touched and wove into poetics and tones the viscereal cabinets of the personal, the guarded – like the chevalier’s lament of a chanson courtoise unresolved or the haunting melancholy of an autumn’s waning moon. The only term that comes close to a designation is – in Gabriele’s own words during a conversation with her afterward – “DreamFolk”.

On Gabrielle’s albums, there are layers of vocals, various keyboard instruments, and the sounds from numerous field recordings and of household objects meticulously chosen to weave within her compositions; but here, presented live with only Mika, they are heard in a different dimension – minimal yet complete, drawing one into an intimate depth and breadth of emotion which etches indelible impressions, like feathered mehndi markings, on one’s soul, one’s memory …and one’s heart.

Description cannot sufficiently recount the experience encountered nor the allurement of the enchanted compass fashioned that evening by Gabrielle and Mika – words will fail. Regrettably, just as one is woken ere a sublime dream concludes…

All too soon the lights dimmed to dark.
All too soon the cloistered garden’s gates sealed.
All too soon… Her Harbour was here no more.

Her Harbour > Website, Bandcamp, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, iTunes, Wyrd Distro

Merganzer > Website, Website (Mika), Facebook, Twitter, SoundCloud

All photos – Scott Martin Visuals

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