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Award-winning British songwriters, composers and multi-instrumentalists, Chrissy Mostyn and Rick Pilkington are The Blackheart Orchestra.
If you want to cite influences, you could credit Mike Oldfield, Kate Bush, Laurie Anderson, Tori Amos or Michael Nyman but, the fact is, The Blackheart Orchestra is unique, with a sound and style all of its own.
The latter part of 2019 saw The Blackheart Orchestra support the amazing Hawkwind on an arena tour, also taking in the Royal Albert Hall, and playing alongside the supergroup's guest star Mark Knopfler. It was at that time that the Blackheart Orchestra also brought out their new album Mesmeranto, launched at their 2019 appearance at the St Austell Arts Centre.
The tour and album launch brought Rick and Chrissy's music to a huge, new audience and the album garnered fantastic reviews. The album, Mesmeranto, made Top Twenty in the charts and Chrissy was voted one of the 2019 Top Ten female vocalists in the world, by Prog magazine.
The Blackheart Orchestra concerts have been described as: “A life-enhancing listening event” and “An avant-garde musical utopia” Chrissy has been described as having “One of the most extraordinary voices singing anywhere today” and together with the incredibly talented multi-instrumentalist Rick Pilkington the pair combine classical influences with vintage synthesisers and ultra-contemporary electronica to create music that takes over the senses.
As emotionally charged as it is musically accomplished, audiences are treated to sublime harmonies, virtuoso guitar, piano and synthesiser playing and songwriting and arrangements that take the audience ”from heartbreaking to uplifting in a single song”.
With awards including Best British Duo, a Limelight Progressive Music Award Nomination and being voted in the UK’s Top 4 Best New Bands, plus performances at the London Palladium and Royal Albert Hall, The Blackheart Orchestra are two voices and thirteen instruments that create a unique musical experience that is truly ground-breaking. The pioneering duo blend musical styles, seamlessly sidestepping boundaries to create music huge enough to fill a cathedral!
Well known for producing music beyond all easily marketed genres, their multi-instrumental sonic landscapes have always been too unpredictable for pop, too adventurous for the mainstream and too plain weird for folk. However, it appeals to all who love quality music.
Fusing acoustic fragility and pulsing electronica, The Blackheart Orchestra bring together stringed instruments with '80s synthesisers and classical influences. Often mistaken for an 8-piece band on first listen, their stage has been described as a ‘musical spaceship’ where they are to be found continuously changing from electric and acoustic guitars, bowed guitar, piano, organ, bass and electronic percussion to vintage synthesisers, omnichord and melodica in a complex choreographed weave of musical moods and textures. One moment their sound is minimal and molecular, the next a mountain-like wall of sound with vast symphonic climaxes.
A treat for the eyes as well as the ears: to witness two people become an “orchestra”,
seemlessly, almost invisibly, switching vocals and instruments
between them is as mesmeric to watch as their music is hypnotic to hear.
Described by the Daily Express as “Ethereal”,
Rock Society magazine as “One of the most extraordinary female voices singing anywhere”
and by Genesis Legend Steve Hackett as “Beautiful, powerful and inspiring”
Chrissy Mostyn Voted No.8 Best Female Vocalist - PROG Magazine Readers Poll January 2020
The Blackheart Orchestra - Winner ‘Best British Duo’ - Exposure Music Awards
The Blackheart Orchestra
"Taking the more muted moments of Florence + The Machine, a more accessible Portishead and Ellie Goulding’s angrier little sister and mixing it in a sparse little electro sound-lab has created something particularly enthralling. The beats gently lurch forwards while the electric melodies pulse and sparkle in the shadows allowing Mostyn’s voice to take centre stage in all its breathy elegance." Listen with Monger blogspot. The Blackheart Orchestra are a British singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist duo comprising long term collaborators Chrissy Mostyn and Richard Pilkington. The band blend musical styles in a non-conformist way seamlessly sidestepping boundaries to create their unique, highly individual, emotion-drenched music. One moment their sound is minimalist and fragile, weaving melodies and atmospherics with silence to create ethereal musical landscapes that leave audiences and critics describing their work as haunting, enchanting and captivating. Other times the pair create a mountain-like wall of sound using ancient synthesisers, electronic drums, acoustic, electric and bowed guitars and bass to create vast energetic symphonic climaxes. The band have drawn comparisons to Kate Bush, Ellie Goulding, London Grammar, Pink Floyd, Steve Reich and Ludovico Einaudi. The Blackheart Orchestra have toured extensively in the UK, Australia and New Zealand and are touring with 60s legend Melanie Safka before embarking on a headline tour of Europe in November. “A great band” Aled Jones BBC Radio 2 “Beautiful and powerful. Their music is inspiring.” Steve Hackett, Genesis “Their music gives me the chills! So beautiful.” Melanie Safka “Utterly magical” John Gilmore, BBC “Absolutely beautiful” Good Morning TV (New Zealand) “They take their audience from heartbreaking to uplifting in a single song” Western Star (Australia) “The Blackheart Orchestra remind us why music lifts us up” Dalton Delan, American Public Television (USA) “The pair sound like an 8 piece band, incredible” Sally Naden, BBC Radio “Supremely gifted” Nottingham Post “Stunningly beautiful, this duo are on the fringe of true greatness” Kensington and Chelsea Today, London
See 4 tour dates featuring The Blackheart Orchestra
St. Austell Arts Theatre
- 87 Truro Road
- St. Austell
- PL25 5HJ