When we watched “Heirloom” for the first time, we were instantly spellbound by how perfectly the visuals harmonized with the sound, already so cinematic on its own. Memoryhouse, a musical project between Evan Abeele and Denise Nouvion of Guelph, Ontario, play music that is more difficult to pin down that one would think. While the instrumental is drenched in lo-fi dream pop, the vocals have a certain poised clarity. “I think we’re both very fascinated with the human condition,” says Abeele, “so we tend to largely write about the kind of everyday minutiae that often goes unnoticed by the world at large. I don’t see it as longing for the past, as much as it is longing for some kind of understanding about the present.”
Memoryhouse is named after a collection of classical music by the German-born composer, Max Richter. “I think there is a tendency to conflate certain sounds people associate with us, or, again, our band name itself with the content or ‘meaning’ behind the music.” Says Abeele, adding “[Max Richter] is like The Strokes of the modern classical world.” Abeele nods to “mid-60s-early-70s folk and orchestral pop music,” for his other inspirations. “I really love Vashti Bunyan,” he continues, “and Bert Jansch, and Scott Walker…too many to name.”
Director Jamie Harley created the stunning visual collage for “Heirloom” using old footage from Home Movie: On the Set of Philippe Garrel’s ‘Le Lit de la Vierge’ a documentary on the 1969 film Le Lit de la Vierge (The Bed of the Virgin,) which apparently had no script, was shot mostly under the influence of LSD, and featured original music from Velvet Underground’s Nico. Pretty epic if you ask us.
Keep your ears peeled for Memoryhouse’s debut LP, out in 2011.