Published Mar 20, 2009As you may know, the Knife have been keeping busy this year, not with a follow-up to their celebrated Silent Shout LP but with the Swedish duo's very own Darwinian opera. The live performance piece, called Tomorrow, in a Year, was commissioned by Danish theatre company Hotel Pro Forma and as the Knife's Karin Dreijer Andersson recently told Exclaim!, it's set for a September premiere in Copenhagen.
According to the pitch-shifting vocalist, the piece is very much based around Charles Darwin's The Origin of Species, and "if it sounds good in the end, we'll probably release it [as an album]."
"I think the idea is to describe the process of making that work, [The Origin of Species]," Dreijer Andersson told Exclaim! "He was a geologist at first and collecting samples of everything he found and filling tons of notebooks about his discoveries. And the company, they want us to work in the same way he did when making The Origin of Species, so it's very much focused on the working process."
She went on to explain that the Knife are strictly the composers of Tomorrow, in a Year and will not perform during the live production. "There are three singers: one classic, female, metso soprano; one male, more electronic pop singer; and a female actress. There are also six dancers in the piece as well," Dreijer Andersson explained. "It's more like an opera in the old sense, just a work with music and that means we are very free to do what we want to do."
However, when pressed if she would contribute any vocals to the piece, the singer said, "Maybe I will be there as a ghost."
As for what the Knife's opera will sound like, Dreijer Andersson said we would have just have to just wait and see. Though, she did say we should expect to hear some very heady, envrionmental sounds. "He [brother and fellow Knife member Olof Dreijer] has has been travelling a lot and he was in the Amazon for three weeks recently on a field-recording journey. He got home with a lot of interesting sounds and some of them will be in the opera," Dreijer Andersson said. "He has recorded fish underneath water, which sounds very beautiful. There is so much sound underwater that you never think of, but if you have good microphones you can really hear what's going on down there. I think there will be more environmental sounds as well."
Past the opera, Dreijer Andersson also said Knife fans can indeed expect a proper follow-up to Silent Shout, which came out back in 2006. "We have been talking about making a new Knife album and maybe we'll start it early next year. But we'll see," she said.
In related Knife news, Dreijer Andersson's new solo project, Fever Ray, will give the physical release treatment to its self-titled debut next week on March 24 via Mute.