All Strings Attached: Ólafur Arnalds in Seattle

by Maggie Molloy

In a world so full of noise, the quiet music of Ólafur Arnalds speaks volumes.

His ephemeral melodies have a nostalgic quality—a way of immersing the listener in muted whispers of sound. Drifting amid his chorus of amplified keyboards and synthesizers, the passage of time becomes quietly punctuated by gentle drum beats and sighing strings. His music plays with perception—if you listen long enough, it blurs the lines of time.

The fluidity of time is one of the major themes behind Arnalds’ world tour All Strings Attached, which comes through Seattle this Saturday at the Moore Theatre. Featuring music from his past, present, and future records, the concert examines the unity and interconnectedness of humanity through an immersive musical performance.

The concert features Arnalds at the keyboard backed by a new generative piano device that he created in collaboration with audio developer Halldór Eldjárn. When Arnalds performs live, each note he plays triggers (in real time) unique musical sequences on two different Disklavier player pianos, creating a sort of duet between human and computer. Adding texture to Arnalds’ collection of keyboards is a uniquely wired ensemble of string quintet and drums—each sound delicately intertwined, all strings attached.

Ólafur Arnalds performs at the Moore Theatre on Saturday, Jan. 26 at 8pm. Click here for tickets and more information.

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