NEW RECORD LABEL LAUNCH
The Decca Records Group has launched a brand new record label, Mercury KX, the first post-classical imprint operating within a major music group. It was unveiled with a special launch event at London’s Omeara, introducing the label’s newest acts.
Already home to Icelandic composer Òlafur Arnalds, Mercury KX has added multiple new artists to its growing roster, including London duo Solomon Grey, Australian composer and pianist Luke Howard, and the mysteriously masked pianist Lambert.
Mercury KX is a new incarnation of the Mercury Classics label. The new label aims to identify and work with composer-performers of strong creative individuality that bring a distinctive perspective to contemporary music. The label will focus on new instrumental music – crossing borders between electronic, modern, classical, alternative and ambient.
Dr. Alexander Buhr, Managing Director of Mercury KX comments:
“These incredibly talented artists are crafting distinctive new music at the fringes of classical, alternative and electronica. Freedom is the engine of creativity, and with this new label we want to offer them a platform without genre restrictions. Mercury KX is to be defined by mutual aesthetic values rather than genre, which offer its artists the opportunity to venture into whatever musical directions inspire them.”
With the launch of Mercury KX, Decca continues to widen the already incredibly diverse roster of artists and labels within the group.
The first album release on the Mercury KX label is Arnalds’ Island Songs – which captured the sound of his native Iceland through innovative recording and collaborations.
Mercury KX Artists
Ólafur Arnalds is celebrated for his haunting musical style, which evocatively mixes elements of ambient, classical and electronic sounds. His latest project Island Songs, described as ‘a living musical film project’, saw him travel around Iceland, recording and releasing a new song each week in collaboration with local artists and director Baldvin Z. It resulted in an album and feature documentary.
In 2013 Arnalds’ music was propelled into the UK’s mainstream consciousness with his scoring of ITV’s acclaimed drama Broadchurch, for which he earned a BAFTA. He has toured extensively and done successful collaborations with a host of artists including singer Arnór Dan, concert pianist Alice Sara Ott and pianist and producer Nils Frahm.
It’s not even three years ago that a pianist with a Sardinian mask that looks like an antelope suddenly stepped into the public eye. Some say he was born in Hamburg, Germany, where he began learning the piano, though little is known about this elusive figure. The likes of Nils Frahm are credited on his self-released debut album, while reworks of José Gonzalez, Phoenix and Moderat have recently surfaced. Lambert’s piano is moving, from Satie-esque moments over modal Jazz towards grand, romantic pop moments.
Solomon Grey is a London-based project of the musicians, producers and composers Tom Kingston and Joe Wilson. The band released two singles via tastemaker labels Black Butter and Kitsuné before releasing their debut album in March 2016 via Decca Records. The duo’s reputation for producing distinct and contemporary cinematic music has led them to become sought after Film & TV composers – having previously scored the soundtrack to the BBC & HBO production of JK Rowling’s The Casual Vacancy they are currently working on a new BBC 1 drama series scheduled for summer 2017.
Australian pianist and composer Luke Howard has built himself a dedicated international following through his self released music, combining strings, piano, synthesizers and electronics. A dedicated live performer Luke has opened for Benjamin Clementine and Ben Frost, and performed with artists as diverse as Lior and Jeff Mills. His music has been described as “totally sublime” (Headphone Commute, February 2014) and “absolutely heavenly” (Mary Anne Hobbs, July 2013).