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Baker's Dozen

A Safe Place For Me: Jesca Hoop's 13 Favourite Records
Diva Harris , August 14th, 2019 08:25

Ahead of her performance at Green Man this weekend, Jesca Hoop guides Diva Harris through her 13 favourite albums, from Björk to Dylan, Cat Stevens and Kate Bush


Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares - Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares
That’s the Bulgarian women’s choir – The Mystery of the Bulgarian Voice. I think the first time I heard this choir was on a Kate Bush record, on the song ‘Deeper Understanding’. She has the Trio Bulgarka, which is a trio that comes out of this choir, three highlighted singers.

I don’t speak Bulgarian, I’m not sure what they’re talking about, but it’s a pure sound that I’m wrapped in. I don’t comprehend what they’re saying, but there is no language barrier. Because the communication is there…I don’t need to have a narrative.

‘Polegnala E Todora’ off this record resonates with the part of me that loves chamber music and choral singing. You have these really beautiful, soft sopranos, and then you have these – all of a sudden – very striking alto singers. The Balkan harmonic aesthetic informs a lot of what I do, I think. Since I heard this choir sing, I’ve been drawn back to it in terms of how I hear harmony, and also the timbres that they’re using…it’s hard to grasp how they’re achieved it, how they’ve learned to sing as one with each other.