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Mirel Wagner

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  • Mirel Wagner

  • Mirel Wagner

Albums

Biography All Music Guide

All Music Guide:

Singer/songwriter Mirel Wagner's gothic folk recalls a rich tradition of brooding lyricists from Billie Holiday to Leonard Cohen to Hope Sandoval while crafting a sound uniquely her own. Born in Ethiopia and raised in Espoo, Finland, Wagner first took up music at age seven, learning to play violin; by 13 she switched to guitar and three years later began writing songs. "To the Bone," the opening track from her debut record, represents one of those early works. Jean Ramsay, an American journalist based in Finland, discovered Wagner at an open-mike night in Helsinki, and his rave reviews led the artist to the recording studio, where in two days she laid down 12 songs. Her self-titled full-length debut arrived in Europe in February 2011 (and stateside by March 2012), introducing listeners to her poetic, darkly romantic lyrics, weary yet sensual vocals, and minimalist trance-like guitar playing. For her second album, Wagner collaborated with Finnish producer Sasu Ripatti, best known for his work as Luomo and Vladislav Delay. Ripatti's polished, cavernous on 2014's When the Cellar Children See the Light of Day heightened the eerie intensity of Wagner's music.

eMusic Features

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2012 Breakthrough: Cold Specks

By Elisa Bray, Contributor

[Of all of the records that came out this year, none captured our hearts as much as I Predict a Graceful Expulsion, the stirring, evocative debut from Al Spx, who records as Cold Specks. From the moment we heard it, we knew it was something truly special. Spx mastered the art of "sense language," writing words with no clear literal meaning, but with whole volumes of conveyed feeling. It is a poem of hope for… more »

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Six Degrees of Mirel Wagner’s Mirel Wagner

By John Morthland, Contributor

It used to be easier to pretend that an album was its own perfectly self-contained artifact. The great records certainly feel that way. But albums are more permeable than solid, their motivations, executions and inspirations informed by, and often stolen from, their peers and forbearers. It all sounds awfully formal, but it's not. It's the very nature of music — of art, even. The Six Degrees features examine the relationships between classic records and five… more »

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Six Degrees of Mirel Wagner’s Mirel Wagner

By John Morthland, Contributor

It used to be easier to pretend that an album was its own perfectly self-contained artifact. The great records certainly feel that way. But albums are more permeable than solid, their motivations, executions and inspirations informed by, and often stolen from, their peers and forbearers. It all sounds awfully formal, but it's not. It's the very nature of music — of art, even. The Six Degrees features examine the relationships between classic records and five… more »

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New This Week: Madonna, Mirel Wagner, Billy Hart & More

By J. Edward Keyes, Editor-in-Chief

Madonna decided to wreak a little havoc by releasing her 12th album, MDNA, yesterday instead of today, which caused a host of other acts to do the same thing. To which I say: NICE WORK, SHEEP. We'll forgive you this time. Here's what I found. Tell me what I missed in the comments. Madonna, MDNA: Madonna's 12th album finds her reuniting with producer William Orbit on several tracks, teaming with M.I.A. and Nicki Minaj on another… more »