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***Ekin Fil returns to the guitar on Dora Agora. Her earliest recordings, notably her debut on Root Strata, prominently featured guitar in this urgent expressions of a dreamy dreariness that immediately offered enthusiastic comparisons to Grouper. In her development as composer of ephemeral ghostliness for numerous albums as well as her scores to film soundtracks, that instrument has given way to keyboards, organs, synths, and various mood engineering devices, in her beautifully melancholy pursuits of an emotional emptiness through sound. Yet, the pandemic era gave Ekin pause to reflect on her creative process and she picked that instrument back up to create one of her greatest albums to date. As direct and urgent as these songs can be, Ekin swaddles her acoustic guitar chords in soft-focus reverb and polyphonous shadow, colored with a judicious amount of shoegazing drone and somber atmosphere that speaks to her continued development as a composer. "Ghost Boy" in particular is a bittersweet, wistful tune whose arrangement harkens to Johnny Marr at his peak of effortless downer simplicity. "Farba" and "Yo Feelings" turn the emotional screws with soul-crush crescendos of vocal melodies that build upon Ekin's lonely guitar chords. Again, Grouper emerges as one of Ekin's closest neighbors, alongside Carla Dal Forno, Slowdive's Pygmallion, and Movietone. "I really feel like I've gone back to a time when I was recording songs with a guitar and keyboard when I was very young. It's kind of li ke embracing Ekin from that period with my current ideas &...

LP $23.25

10/07/2022  

HMS 067 


MP3 $9.90

10/07/2022 795154137060 

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FLAC $11.99

10/07/2022 795154137060 

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In recent years, the Turkish drone-pop composer Ekin Fil (born Ekin Üzeltüzenci) has been refining her talents in the realm of the film score. Since her first recordings that were published by Root Strata and Students of Decay, she has always exhibited a preternatural ability to express the saddest of emotions through sound. Once channeled through the lens of a gauzy shoegazing smear of guitars and voice, she has peeling away layers of her ephemeral songs to reveal their emotional core. That compositional process that works so well for her award winning film scores informs the soft-focus tenebrous pieces of her 2020 album Coda.  It’s true that any number of these pieces on this album could announce the finale to an emotionally draining movie, but Ekin sculpts the entire album as a whole, dissolving one perfectly tempered piano motif, an impressionist ambient plume or a sibilant vocal melody into another. Just at the threshold of perception, she occasionally invokes cascades of distant noise that easily can be interpreted as the ominous premonitions for natural disasters - incoming storms, earthquakes, or tidal waves. This subtle disquiet amidst the introspective melancholy furthers the emotional weightiness of Coda. Her somber, blissful compositions have considerable gravity of their own in the constellation of Grouper, Felicia Atkinson, and Harold Budd. Mastered by James Plotkin.

LP $17.75

08/14/2020  

HMS 054 


MP3 $9.90

07/17/2020 767870662973 

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FLAC $11.99

07/17/2020 767870662973 

HMS 054 


***EKIN FIL continues her quietly complex dream-pop oeuvre on Maps. For many years now, this Istanbul musician has been writing mysterious and haunting songs, rich in heavy-reverb effects and an introspective torpor. With each successive album, her songwriting has blossomed through broader instrumentation and more intricate melodic phrasing, though the somber atmospherics and ghostly manifestations remain a judicious constant. Minor-key, tear-stained notes of piano, organ, and guitar veer along elliptical orbits as a soft-whisper lilt of Ekin’s voice narrates more by emotive decree than by literary couplet.   Maps addresses the distance and dislocation of the self from the bustling center of Istanbul, where Ekin FIl (neé Ekin Üzeltüzenci) had once called her home. Having spent her first winter on a relatively quiet island in the Sea of Marmara (while still in the greater metropolitan umbrella of Istanbul), Maps is “lonely, different, kind of isolated,” according to Ekin, who also noted that the island had “too much silence around. There is no other choice but to concentrate, I guess.” Her poetics of silence on her previous recordings had been noted as an antidote or a dream capsule of sound in response to Istanbul’s cauldron of politics, culture, and philosophy that has been boiling almost since the beginning of civilization. Maps bends that maritime silence into wind-swept smudges that complement her already spacious compositions.   The saddest songs of The Durutti Column excised of rhythm and those few plunges into sorrow by Harold Budd make for apt comparisons to...

LP $17.75

08/17/2018  

HMS 048 


MP3 $7.99

08/17/2018 655035181516 

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FLAC $8.99

08/17/2018 655035181516 

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***Istanbul's drone-pop producer EKIN FIL turns her sites to the big screen for the first soundtrack in her impressive catalogue of recordings. Inflame (2017) is a psychological thriller laced with paranoia and nightmares, directed by Ceylan Özgün Özçelik and was showcased at the Berlin International Film Festival and the SXSW Film Festival, amongst others. In making her cinematic debut, Ekil Fil turns synths and electronics, in building the score that in part is brimming with tension and claustrophobia through out all the blank spaces. Always known for her restrained compositions that float amidst ethereal pools of drone and whorl, Ekin Fil sets forth haunting minor-key melodies, monotone arppegiations and plenty of seance-fiction dread. Scattered bits of the film's sound design flicker at the edges of these tracks, as an aural hallucination that dissolves as quickly as it becomes evident. Dubbed electro rhythms creep through the recursive leitmotifs and variations on themes always cast in a dim, crepuscular light. Less informed by the retro-garde aesthetics of Carpenter and Argento, the spectral electronics of Inflame's soundtack finds its neighbors in the skeletal sprawl of Raime and the darker ambient propositions sponsored by Posh Isolation.

MC $7.75

11/17/2017  

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MP3 $7.99

11/17/2017 655035184142 

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FLAC $8.99

11/17/2017 655035184142 

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***EKIN FIL is the acclaimed drone-pop chanteuse working with the sparest of materials in her ethereal, shoegaze deconstructions. Her sound developed out of a healthy obsession with Cranes, Cocteau Twins, Slowdive and many other bands that she discovered in the tattered back issues of NME and the home-dubbed tapes that were passed around when she was growing up in Turkey. Upon a fortuitous invitation to perform alongside Grouper in Istanbul in the late oughts, Ekin Fil (née Ekin Üzeltüzenci) began producing a series of hidden gems in the drone-rock underworld through releases on Root Strata, Students Of Decay, Bathetic and No Kings. Ghosts Inside continues to find Ekin coaxing somber melodies out of echo, shadow and whisper, even as she expands her arrangements to include piano and keyboards to accompany the guitar, voice and array of pedals that had been front and central on her previous recordings. Ghosts Inside stands as her most arresting recordings to date, written during a period of personal despair with an oblique poetry of sadness cascading through the songs. Her father battling cancer. The end of a romance. It’s an introspective sound, completely turned in on itself and tuning out the socio-political tumult of her native home in Istanbul. In confronting psychic distress, heartache and depression, Ekin Fil blocks out the rest of the world to concentrate on the immediate issues of human relationships and their many complications. Allusions to catharsis flicker through the sullen, narcotized beauty of Ghosts Inside, updating the mood found on...

LP $17.75

06/30/2017  

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MP3 $8.99

06/30/2017 655035177113 

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FLAC $9.90

06/30/2017 655035177113 

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***Had the titular contest in Guy Maddin's The Saddest Music In The World not been rigged from the onset, Turkey could have delivered an impeccable contestant in EKIN FIL. For many years now, her spectral dream-pop deconstructions hold a thousand-yard stare of an unconsolable melancholy; and she's drawn the highly favorable comparisons to Grouper and lovesliecrushing thanks to her understated yet beloved catalogue of releases on Root Strata, Students Of Decay, No Kings, and Sacred Phrases. Helen Scarsdale has long been a fan of Ekin Fil's work, and we are delighted to have her in our constellation of artists here at The Agency.   Born Ekin Üzeltüzenci and based in her native Istanbul, she cites the shoegazing classics (Cocteau Twins, Cranes, Slowdive, etc.) as her earliest influence, seeking out worn issues of Melody Maker or NME from second hand shops and trading cassettes with friends and fellow enthusiasts. This Proustian obsession with rainsoaked melodies from the British Isles blossomed into a foundation for her own art. Being Near stands as the pinnacle in her luminous career, with achingly beautiful and elegantly simple arrangements for guitar and electronics saturated in cavernous amounts of reverb, whose semi-mystical blur extends well into the vocal melodies. Ekin Fil's songs emote a timelessness of human desire and longing, albeit constrained to this plane of existence. For Üzeltüzenci, her music is not an escape valve from the patriarchal hammer of the dominant culture in Turkey, but a reflection through her own condition, in her own context,...

LP $17.25

03/17/2017 655035176413 

 


MP3 $8.99

06/24/2016 655035176413 

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FLAC $9.90

06/24/2016 655035176413 

 


Operating out of Istanbul, Ekin Fil is the solo project of Turkish musician Ekin Üzeltüzenci. Her music first came to the ears of many by way of Language, a 2011 cassette release on the Root Strata label that presented listeners with a fractured, hazy sound-world in which half-remembered melodies and wraith-like vocals cohered into dark and hypnotic masses.  On Ekin Fil, Üzeltüzenci opens the curtains a bit, letting in some light and offering up an even more refined work. This haunting collection of songs wouldn’t sound out of place on Drunken Fish Records in 1995, effectively channeling the ghosts of Roy Montgomery and the Bristol shoegaze scene, while occupying similar sonic climes to those traversed by Grouper and Jessica Bailiff.  “Anything Anywhere” opens the album and articulates its central concerns, with obscured, rhythmic guitar shapes coiling around Üzeltüzenci’s ethereal voice. Later, field recordings usher in the blackened night of “Two Stars,” one of the record’s most stark and exhilarating movements. Ultimately, Ekin Fil is a remarkably cohesive statement, an album of devotional pieces that function together to form a beautiful, faraway whole.

LP $16.00

05/14/2013 600197509913 

SOD 99 


MP3 $7.92

05/14/2013 600197509913