PREMIERE: Shannon Hayden Loops Her Cello in a Downward Spiral in “Vanished” Video

The Chicago-based musician released her debut album last month.

Chicago-based cellist Shannon Hayden began playing her instrument at the age of seven, and she demonstrated such an acumen for it that she was invited to Yale’s School of Music to pursue graduate studies at the age of eighteen. While in New Haven, she not only immersed herself in contemporary classical music—notably composers Ezra Laderman and David Lang, both of whom she worked with—she found herself pushing beyond even the loose limitations imposed by traditional cello work.

You See the World, her solo debut, finds her spinning together loop upon loop of lustrous cello together, braiding ribbons of various weights into a unified sound. In album opener “Vanished,” she gives a master class in horror sounds: she alternately mimics the growl of an ’80s slasher-film synth line and the pizzicato slashes of Bernard Herrmann, ultimately tying them together under the gray sky of Mogwai’s work on Les Revenants.

The video, which we’re pleased to be premiering today, is a decidedly lighter affair. Hayden sits behind her cello, rocking into the notes, while a series of filters obscures and reveals her face. Even when she’s smiling and bounding through a field in brightly colored tights, the nostalgic eeriness of her instrument suggests that nothing is all that safe. You can check it out below.

You See the World is out now.


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