Flutter. Quiver. Howl.
Tanya Tagaq’s music isn’t like anything you’ve heard before. Unnerving and exquisite, Tagaq’s unique vocal expression may be rooted in Inuit throat singing but her music has as much to do with electronica, industrial and metal influences as it does with traditional culture.
This Inuk punk is known for delivering fearsome, elemental performances that are visceral and physical, heaving and breathing and alive. Her shows draw incredulous response from worldwide audiences, and Tagaq’s tours tend to jump back and forth over the map of the world. From a Mexican EDM festival to Carnegie Hall, her music and performances transcend language.
Tagaq makes musical friends and collaborators with an array of like-minded talents: opera singers, avant-garde violin composers, experimental DJs, all cutting edge and challenging. Tanya’s albums make for complex listening, but her string of Juno nominations attests to her ability to make difficult music speak a universal tongue.
Animism was produced by west coast shape-shifter Jesse Zubot (Dan Mangan, Fond of Tigers) with additional production by Juan Hernandez. The record features Michael Red (Low Indigo), a live programmer whose wild northern field recordings often serve as Tagaq’s de facto backing band, percussionist Jean Martin and Belgian opera singer Anna Pardo Canedo.
“Tungijuq” Western Music Awards (2010)
Best Short Drama
“Tungijuq” ImagineNative Film & Media Awards (2009)
Best Album Design
“Auk/Blood” Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards (2008)
Best Female Artist
Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards (2005)
Best Album Design
“Sinna” Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards (2005)
“Sinaa” Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards (2005)
“Tagaq projects sounds that carry the imprint of the body’s secret contours and recesses, delving far beyond personal utterance, out beyond human identity, to summon voices from the flesh cavity haunts of animal spirits and primal energies.” —THE WIRE, UK
“Calling Tanya Tagaq an Inuit throat singer is like calling Yo-Yo Ma a cello player. Sure, it’s accurate, but it’s not the whole of what he does. Like Ma, Tagaq is the best of what she does — innovative, inspired.” —THE NATIONAL POST, CANADA
“… [Tagaq] made it (Inuit throat singing) sound fiercely contemporary, futuristic even. Recalling animal noises and various other nature sounds, she was a dynamo, delivering a sort of gothic sound art while she stalked the small basement stage with feral energy.” —Jon Caramanica, THE NEW YORK TIMES
“… Tagaq rose to the occasion with a performance that was simply elemental. Her approach is essentially abstract …Yet her singing delivered very concrete images of winter storms and summer sunshine, of birth and death and sexual ecstasy, of struggle and survival.” —Alex Varty, THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, Review of Jan 30, 2010 performance with Kronos Quartet
“...magnificent, unique, overwhelming life force,” —FROOTS MAGAZINE
“Tanya Tagaq was an absolute standout, The Canadian prowling inside the candle-surrounded circular centre of the mausoleum and proving to be haunting both in breath-taking beautiful and completely terrifying manners, switching almost instantaneously and at times rapidly between high-octave almost operatic melodies and guttural yelps, the venue making it seem ash though she was duetting with herself in some hypnotic demonic dance. Catch her at all costs if you possibly can.” —GLASGOW REVIEW, HAMILTON MAUSOLEUM, GLASGOW
“Quite how one woman sitting with four musicians could create such a visceral image is both baffling and difficult to explain, but this was an exquisitely drawn landscape. And the effect was nothing short of cinematic.” —GLOBE & MAIL, CANADA, (concert review of Tundra Songs with the Kronos Quartet)