«A powerful chemistry between a couple, a unique sound and the inevitable confrontation of sexes: the band Mira, which recently released its first record, titled ‘I need to get back home,’ has all the ingredients of a special and one-of-a-kind Turkish band
If it is all about chemistry, as they say, then that might explain the incredible success of the gloomy Istanbul-based music duo Mira.
The combination of vocalist Miray Kurtuluş and multi-instrumentalist Tan Tunçağ offer bleak songs of sadness and love in their recently released debut record «Eve Dönmeliyim,» («I need to get back home»). But there is another dominant feeling there — the usual tension between a woman and a man.
Tunçağ, who is no stranger to the Turkish music scene as half of the alternative-tinged dance duo Portecho, came across Kurtuluş’ personal page on the popular Web site MySpace, where some musicians have come to share and promote their music. He was impressed with the young woman’s songs with her band Nada and so got in touch with her. At first, Tunçağ simply wanted to remix one of the young artist’s songs, but then the idea of making music together started to go. And so the story goes . . .
«That was something I wanted to do,» Tunçağ told the Turkish Daily News on what drew him to Kurtuluş’ music. «That sadness with Turkish words, which was something I frankly could not do very well.»
However, if not in Turkish, in English Tunçağ has achieved a mastery of such poignant lyrics. Given that he can use one dark line like «In this town, we have no sympathy» in an up tempo song like Portecho’s «Sympathy, he has the right to say, «Mira’s lyrics are almost the Turkish version of what we did with Portecho.»
After the pair had recorded a few songs, one of which was the oriental-tinged «Bir Gün Gelir» («Comes a day»), while making a compilation with the Elec-Trip Record label, the duo felt that their music was mature enough to be transformed into an album.
«We have felt that the band has found its own identity,» said Tunçağ, adding that the rest of the album was created and recorded in the year following the two artists’ decision to work together.
It must be noted that Mira provides nowhere near the party atmosphere Portecho did. Yes, as a dance band, Portecho had the brains, but Mira does not let the listeners get to their feet for the hour-long span of the album, which is usually drowned in sadness and melancholy worthy of indie cult group Blonde Redhead, shoe gazing legend Cocteau Twins and occasionally the paranoid spy-movie moments of Portishead.
Kurtuluş general writes the songs melodies, plus some lyrics, which she leaves partially unfinished. Then Tunçağ begins producing the song. Some collaboration takes place, but generally the process proceeds more «intuitively.»
«Tan arranges the song and adds a melody, and I write some more lyrics,» said Kurtuluş. «It all builds up, it happens gradually.»
Assuming that Miray writes the lyrics and sings the songs, while Tan spends more time in production duties, one might be drawn to the metaphor that Tunçağ is the brain, and Kurtuluş is the heart.
«Maybe, in a way,» laughs Tunçağ. «What I did was to bring out the meaning of the song, because I am not really into the mathematics of music. I don’t know about note reading, for example.»
Miray said she is happy her ideas for songs are being refined by someone else.
«He underlines my lyrics or lifts the melody to higher places,» she said. «If it is sad, he makes it even sadder.»
Tan agrees. «There is something more feminine in Miray’s words,» he said, adding, «There is that influence of coming together of both sexes. Maybe there is a sexuality there.»
It is, perhaps, that unique sexual tension that makes Mira such a one-of-a-kind Turkish band.»
Αναζητείστε το «Undertone» από Portecho στα ενημερωμένα δισκάδικα:
World Fusion from Istanbul
Elec-Trip Records is an independent label producing and releasing fusion & world music albums and its based in Istanbul, Turkey. Founded in January 2002, Elec-Trip Records produced various original albums mostly in ethnic-electronic styles and is currently working on new album projects and compilations including underground electronic musicians’ works as well. The main focus of the label is to reflect the fusion music from Istanbul by giving licences and distributions. Songs of various artists are also sent to world compilations and other label partners for releases.
Elec-Trip Records follows the management and booking of its artists and controls their publishing rights in and outside of Turkey. In Turkey, EMI is the exclusive distribution company of Elec-Trip Records.
Μερικές πληροφορίες για τους Portecho, από το http://changingturkey.com/:
PORTECHO – BIO
Tan Tuncag and Deniz Cuylan got together in 2005 to form Portecho, Turkey’s hippest act and a „fast rising band“ with a „radiant future“ as The New York Times points out. The duo signed to Elec-Trip Records and recorded both their debut, „Undertone“ and their second album, „Studio Plastico“, with producer and music director Oguz Kaplangi.
In the second album, Portecho have maintained their unique voice while introducing variations into the rhythms they are known to use. The tracks do have a touch of the 80’s but the artists have generally refrained from sticking with a single period in music as their reference. The rhythms borrow from r&b, breakdance or breakbeat and the melodies in this album are mostly of the major kind. “Studio Plastico” is a record with character that will put a smile on your face whether you are on the dance floor or just quietly listening to the album in the privacy of your home.
Tan Tuncag: Vocals, synths
Deniz Cuylan: Synths, guitar
In concerts, Portecho can be accompanied by live drums and bass guitar.
Concerts in Europe:
Portecho played in many reputable venues including Melkweg (Amsterdam),
Fabbrica Europa (Florence) and Sodra Teatern (Stockholm).
Portecho have two music videos from their debut.
Portecho have received the „Best electronic music artist“ award at the Radio Bosphorus 4. Music Awards.
Tan Tuncag, who combines electronica with acoustic elements in his music, embarked on a musical adventure in London where he played in several clubs. After his return to Turkey, Tan Tuncag became one of the leaders of new cross-platform art in Turkey, he has been writing music for theatre, films, TV and commercials. Tuncag has performed in the same events with prominent DJs and electronica groups such as Plaid, Mouse on Mars, The Orb, and Chemical Brothers. Apart from Portecho, Tan Tunçağ also has a Turkish downtempo/rock band, called “Mira”.
Deniz Cuylan brings an alternative angle to modern music through his mixture of groovy electronica and jazz. In addition to performing on stage, he has produced music for television, movies, commercials and fashion shows (Dusseldorf and Moscow), hosted the radio show “Tirtillar”, and he was the editor of the alternative lifestyle-music magazine “Bant”. He first became known in Turkey for his “Maya” project whose “Telecine” album was released in 2003. In 2007, he released an illustration book/album called “Netame” in collaboration with the well-known illustrator Sadi Guran and writer Senem Akcay. Deniz Cuylan has completed an album with the ethnic-electronic music band, Norrda. This album titled “Infinite Face” was released by Akkiraz Muzik in 2007.
Από το 2ο νούμερο της απολαυστικής σειράς:
Οι Haximum στο «Tulum»:
& οι Rebel Moves στο «Bandare»:
Οι Norrda στο «Infinite Face»:
& οι Mira στο «Bir Gun Gelir»: