Olga Bell's Krai
Russian-born and New York-based composer/ producer Olga Bell released Krai in April 2014. Inspired by the lesser-known corners of Bell's homeland and written entirely in her native Russian, Krai is Bell's second LP and first large-scale composition.
Lead single "Perm Krai" was premiered via Pitchfork, which claimed it "crawls with tightly compressed activity, all of it separated by clear lines." The entire record also received much press recognition, including being called "brave and sharp" by The Talkhouse, "intriguing and perplexing" by The Quietus, and a "stirring collection of strange, thrilling noises" by Pitchfork.
Born in Moscow and raised in Alaska, Olga Bell is an American composer, producer and performer based in Brooklyn. A prodigious classical pianist as a child and teenager, Bell graduated from the New England Conservatory in 2005, where her primary teachers were Patricia Zander and Victor Rosenbaum. Bell started playing the piano at age seven and made her public debut two years later. At twelve Bell performed an original composition for piano and orchestra with her hometown Anchorage Symphony, at sixteen she was a concerto soloist with the Anchorage Civic Orchestra. As a chamber musician, Bell was a fellow of The Banff Centre, Yale’s Norfolk Festival and The Aspen Music Festival, where she coached with Claude Frank, Ann Schein and members of the Juilliard, Tokyo and St. Petersburg String Quartets. For fourteen years Bell worked hard at classical music while filling every free, private moment with the sound of everything else. There was twelve-year-old Bell, alone in her bedroom at the end of the day, dancing to a radio playing TLC at the lowest detectable volume. There she was improvising piano medleys in the living room, gleefully combining Beethoven with Beatles songs and Beastie Boys beats. And there she was accidentally memorizing Björk, Radiohead, Aphex Twin and Wu-Tang records, DJing school dances and regaling friends with weird mixtapes.
Bell makes original music, remixes and videos under her own name. As half of Nothankyou, Bell makes dance music with British musician Tom Vek. In 2012 Bell joined Dirty Projectors for the band's Swing Lo Magellan cycle and remains a keyboardist and singer with the band today.