“Los Sonidos del Eter”
On the occasion of the publication of her book “Los Sonidos del Éter” (“The Sounds of the Ether”), the artist Sandriuska Theremin releases a brief composition, just over four minutes long, paying sonic homage to this invention that originated electronic music and founded the alliance between music and sound throughout the 20th century.
A notable interpreter of the Theremin, Sandriuska offers us a small symphony of a gothic character, where a melodic phrase in a minor key produced by synthesizer glides progressively along with sonic oscillations from the Theremin, together capturing an atmosphere between the spectral and the dramatic, with ancestry and undulatory climates that evoke images of Europe at the beginning of the 20th century, with all the weight of its wars, confrontations, and the aesthetic urgencies of avant-garde art. This theme could have been the soundtrack of some German expressionist film, I am thinking specifically of “The Golem” by Paul Muni, or as a backdrop for the novels of the Austrian Gustav Meyrink, the last great European master of Gothic literature.
While Sandriuska offers a tribute to the Theremin that was already reflected in part through her book “Los Sonidos del Éter” (Marciano Ediciones, 2020), the novelty of this composition is that it does not create a historicist narrative or documentary demarcation: this work also alludes to the pop music movements that have used electronic instruments to support their styles, creations, and aesthetics since the 1960s. Hence, perhaps we are in the presence of a musical aftertaste from the early days of the German artists Tangerine Dream, or the dark pop of bands like England’s Bauhaus, or even smart techno groups like the English Cabaret Voltaire. In short, this homage dedicates its tribute to an era that began in 1920s and that continues on into the present century. Indeed, a hundred years after the appearance of the Theremin, this instrument still builds worlds and dimensions that liberate perception and lead us to a cosmic trance where magic, mind and body come together in a physical and spiritual communion that only music, and in this case electronic music, can create and provoke with its invocation of mystery.
A beautiful work by this artist who as a composer still has much more to offer.
Fabio Salas Zúñiga
(Santiago, March, 2021)