SUMMER ECSTASY - from the split release Split Frequencies Vol. 2
Andrew Doherty - avenoctum.com - 5/10/2021
So to Guy Harries for his 26 minute “Summer Ecstasy”, which sounded a whole lot more pleasant. Round and round we go in electronic circuits. The sound waves expand and contract and become distorted. It’s coherent in the sense that a foreign language is even if you don’t understand it. But from the grey matter comes a tune. This tune with its constant undercurrent, is reminiscent of early Kraftwerk. Where the first part is sinister by virtue of its distortion, the fluty sound is that of a lovely bright spring day. It’s like a new dawn, as we shuffle along happily. The backing electronic loop is almost Celtic in its way as we bound along like lambs gamboling in a field. This is truly uplifting and invigorating. Slightly darker sound waves appear in the underscore two-thirds of the way through, but it is still mobile. Things change or rather transform, as they do in life, and our journey takes on a more thoughtful and even sinister turn. It never stops and this gives cause for hope. The beat is active. Warped sounds surround the beat but there is constancy. The flute provides levity. We are then for the first time faced with uncertainty as we hear obscure voices and bells, and the echoing, musical sound of dripping water, then the lapping water of the shore. To end the musical journey, it sounds as if we are alone in a forest surrounded by nature. Night time has descended. The wonderland Guy Harries has created is now scary but there is no direct threat. So our situation is uncertain, but Guy Harries invigorated my mind and imagination with this inspiring piece. (9/10)
LIGHT MACHINE - album release December 2020
African Paper 3 April 2021
Guy Harries hatte sicher ganz eigene Gründe, sein vor einigen Wochen erschienenes Album “Light Machine” zu nennen. Eine Sache allerdings, die sofort ins Auge fällt, ist die dem Licht ganz ähnliche Ungreifbarkeit seiner elektroakustischen Sounds, und das trotz der fast songhaften Eingängigkeit ihrer Gestalt. “Light Machine” ist ein Album, auf dem sich vieles überblendet und scheinbar alle Elemente immer wieder zerschmelzen, ineinanderfließen, um sich kurz darauf wieder voreinander zu lösen und andere Vermischungen einzugehen.
Harries ist ein Komponist und Klangkünstler, der seit jeher mit verschiedenen Medien und Klangquellen – elektronischer, akustischer Art – arbeitet, und in den aktuellen Stücken lässt er die größtmögliche Verschmelzung zu – genau so weit, dass die so erschaffenen Strukturen lose bleiben und keine Illusion von Homogenität entstehen lassen.
Auch was Stimmung und Emotionalität betrifft, geht Harris unplakativ zuwerke und lässt einiges zusammenfließen – allem voran das dezente und gleichsam bedrohliche Grummeln und das mystisch entrückte Saitenspiel in “Prism”. Feuer und dunkler Rauch aus dem Hades umhüllt all das irgendwann, um Raum für ein klareres Soundbild zu schaffen. Eine ähnlich gelungene Dramaturgie der Komponenten-Verteilung hat “Pulsar”, in dem ein straight pulsierender Takt ein stabiles Gerüst für folkige (und diesmal weniger orientalisch anmutende) Flöten und sirenenartigen Gesang bildet. All dies scheint in der Empordröhnung des abschließenden “Wave” zur Synthese zu kommen, bevor alles von sanften Wellen weggespült wird wie die Ordnung der Dinge als Gesicht im Sand.
FAULT LINE - album release August 2016
Merchants of Air - 30/10/2016
Harries invites us on a long and mystic journey through soundscapes, noises and pulsating drones…The five tracks consist of field recordings, modular synths and found objects which Harries turned into sonic adventures which will certainly have an effect on your psyche.
Vital Weekly - May 2017
Harries explores the outer limits of atmospheric drone music; while not overtly noisy, it is at the same time also not music that lulls the listener into a deep sleep. Harries' take on drone/atmospheres is that of half asleep and locked inside a huge factory; you doze off but you can't sleep and you hear the hissing and droning of machines around you. You wander around in this hazy state, through all these machine rooms, hoping none of the faulty electrical wiring, steam lines and other debris will hit you. I thought this was a most favourable trip that fits the mood of the Ballard story I was reading at the same time. This was pleasantly spooky, if that is possible.
Sound Projector - January 2018 - by Ed Pinsent
The results are well integrated and indeed quite pleasing; the piece ‘Throb’, for instance, leads the listener on a hypnotic trance odyssey through a modern-day underworld, signposted with samples of train-travel announcements… ‘Lava’ is one of those creeping-doom episodes of bass-heavy noise pulsations that Wolf Eyes and Hair Police used to do so well, while ‘Lumens’ could be an experiment with time-stretching and reverb units that would not be out of place in the walls of the EMS Studio in Stockholm. ‘Insomnia’ is a strong piece too, insomnia being a condition which I wish that more composers would try and address in their work, and the eerie echoed klanging-sounds which reverberate throughout this bleak music, growing increasingly nasty and menacing, are immediately recognisable to any who has spent a long dark night troubled by disconnected and threatening thoughts.
If you really want to sink your body to the full fathom five of Harries’ internalised world, though, then the lengthy track ‘A While, An Eternity’ is the one for you – a dark and unsettling take on the swamp-filled early electronic music of Pauline Oliveros, replete with croaking frogs and sinister insects lurking in the mud. Anyone who samples Max Neuhaus (as he does on ‘Lumens’) is worth a tip of the bonnet, and using field recordings from NYC only adds to the sense of chilling urban menace which permeates the record.
African Paper - 24/6/2017
Auf seinem aktuellen Longplayer „Fault Line“ wählt Harries v.a. abstrakte Mittel, um mit Hilfe bearbeiteter Sounds Emotionen auszudrücken, die sich zum Großteil im Bereich der Spannung bewegen... Gemeinsam ist den Tracks, dass sie in ihrer Dramaturgie auf Steigerung stetzen – steigerung an Fülle, Dynamik und Intensität – und somit ihre zahlreich enthaltenen Soundkomponenten erst nach und nach deutlich werden lassen
TWO CARAVANS at King's Head Theatre autumn 2013
FringeOpera.com - Francesca Wickers - October 2013
The flute is the star of Guy Harries’ imaginative score - written for an array of instruments – which is adventurous with sound without alienating listeners. Haunting Eastern European melodies reflect the characters’ vulnerable moments; at other times, as the strawberry pickers bounce hopefully along the road in their caravan, the music surges with an exotic energy. I’ve never enjoyed contemporary opera more. The production comes at the world from an unusual angle, as new work should, its typecasting and sexual openness bordering on risqué without offending. With the composer himself on the flute and the original author sitting grinning in the front row, this opera is alive in all senses of the word.
RemoteGoat - Aline Waites - 3.10/2013
(4 stars) It is a delightful evening. The music by Guy Harries is very tuneful – yes we do come out singing the final tune! – and manages to inject some Eastern European charm. The libretto by Ace McCarron is always amusing and often downright hilarious.
Time Out London - 10.10.2013 - Jonathan Lennie
[A] zany but fun romantic comedy, with a poignant message about how we treat migrant workers… Harries has created a breezy score for piano and flute.
The Telegraph - 10.10.2013 - Rupert Christiansen
The music… is scored for piano, flute and melodica, it is jaunty and cheerful, with a few wistfully modal folk melodies to provide emotional contrast.
The Stage - 30.9.2013 - George Hall
[D]elivered by the five-strong cast with incredible panache. All of them excel, vocally and dramatically, doubling and tripling up roles as required. Among them, Rosie Middleton (especially as Yola, the Polish gang boss) and
Peter Brathwaite (as Emanuel, a refugee from Malawi) shine particularly brightly; one of his solos - a poignant letter to his sister - is a highlight.
OneStopArts.com - 1.10.2013 - Charlotte Valori
There is humour, there is pathos, there is tension and hilarity, there's a little bit of violence, and there is a lot of very dispiriting sex… I have never seen a more moving depiction of how one society's selfishness oppresses others.
BroadwayWorld.com – 7.10.2013 - Gary Naylor
The music is wonderfully, exotically, Eastern European…
Don't miss the bittersweet tales of the inhabitants of the two eponymous caravans - there's nothing quite like it in town.
MonkeyMattersTheatre.com - 7.10.2013
The challenge for Guy Harries and Ace McCarron on reading Lewycka's 2007 novel, Two Caravans, was how to turn a story about Ukranian strawberry pickers on the run with a stolen caravan, into an opera with all the peaks and troughs the medium demands. Somehow, with a set of steps, a strip of stage, a table and chairs and a cast of five, they've pulled it off. As the East Europeans hit the road with Malawian Christian, Emmanuel, searching for his emigree sister after losing both parents to HIV, we are laughing and sighing.
A sporting cast - the others are Sylvie Gallant, Adam Torrance and Alistair Sutherland - are complimented by Musical Director, Nicola Rose on keyboards. Accompanied by Harries who plays flute, pipes, and other woodwind instruments with a carefree lightness, it's an absorbing two hours.
TWO CARAVANS in Odeon, Zwolle (NL), May 2010
Stentor Zwolle - May 2010
by Margaretha Coornstra
'Composer Guy Harries uses extended tonality, loaded with folk influences: gospel, a touch of klezmer, a bit of milonga. The chameleon-like ensemble with clarinet, accordeon, guitar, double bass and percussion easily switches 'couleur locale' . And even though Harries claims that the composition is based mainly on the text, the results include melodious lines and accessible harmonies.'
David Fenech's audioblog - 17/1/2006
'His voice is captivating, similar at times to that of David Sylvian, and Scott Walker at other moments.'
www.indie-eye.it - 4/6/2006
by Michele Faggi
'Guy Harries's laptop-based music is influenced by an ephemeral world, of glitch, folktronica. Soundscapes, Kurt Weill, Monteverdi, Anton Karas, David Sylvian, Fennesz and maybe a touch of melodrama from the likes of Antony and The Johnsons.'
LULLABY - ON THE TURSA/KAPARTE COMPILATION 'WITH FRIENDS LIKE THESE'
www.blackmagazin.com - 11/5/2010
'Interesting pop from Guy Harries, who with his singing, reminiscent of Brendan Perry, performs the darkest lullaby since Ärzte.'
JASSER DE OPERA
Trouw - 3/10/2006
by Hans Oranje
'The music was created by Israeli born Guy Harries, who wrote a fascinating work, based on western and Arabic music traditions...
The original bleak text, is now presented as an integrated piece - manifest in its aesthetic, and its beautiful sounds and images.'
www.joods.nl - 9/10/2006
by Daniëlle van den Bos
'Jasser the opera' is definitely worthwhile. It hits you in the face (as Guy Harries describes it) in a confrontational, but also refreshing way. The theme of recognising one's thinking in stereotypes and then trying to undo this forces the spectator to confront his/her own prejudices. The multimedia aspect of the piece is also impressive. Jasser belly-dances to the klezmer tunes of the ensemble, while in the background one can see images of the actor walking in the Israeli desert, as well as the back of his girlfriend Marjolein being written on with melted chocolate.'
moose.nl - 2/10/2006
'Israeli composer Guy Harries has managed to accomplish what he states he has set out to do: to ' follow what the text is about'. The piece carries you through a multi-faceted form, and flows seamlessly between spoken and sung texts, music and instrumentation in which arabic and western styles flow into each other, engaging you in the conflicts which the Palestinian-Dutch actor Yasser Mansour is experiencing.'
THINGS THAT BEGIN WITH AN M
Trouw - 31/10/2000
by Kees Polling
'The ensemble performed the beautiful, and at times humorous, piece by young Israeli composer Guy Harries titled Things that begin with an M that he composed for LOOS as part of the Henriette Bosmans Prize he was awarded.
...the piece seemed to be tailored specially for the ensemble, but went further than that. It was utterly comical to see guest-vocalist Jannie Pranger singing texts such as 'Eat me...aha' and 'Drink me....aha'. The conviction in the music is, and remains, LOOS, but the comical aspect which the music brings about puts the LOOS sound in a different context and has a liberating effect.'