İstikrarlı Hayat Hakikattir

30/10/2018Istanbul's Gaye Su Akyol Releases Dreamily Insurgent New Full-Length On Glitterbeat

“Su Akyol’s voice is light but elegant, and her songs are by turns urgent, sultry and romantic and politically barbed. The new sound of Istanbul.” – The Observer

As trying as times in her native Turkey may be at the moment, Istanbul's Gaye Su Akyol is not one to shy away from the limelight or eschew artistic responsibility. With her first international, 2016-released album "Hologram İmparatorluğu" she quickly established herself as "one of Turkey's most compelling young voices and most exhilarating sonic explorers" as her multi-dimensional work "navigates the storied past, the hyper-connected present and the unscripted future". Growing up in Istanbul with influences as diverse as Selda Bağcan or Kurt Cobain, her artistic path sidesteps "tired Oriental/Occidental paradigmatic clichés", focussing rather on a richly nuanced sound that is as globally minded as it is locally anchored. Convincingly backed by her superb band, Gaye Su Akyol spent the past 18 months on the road, touring the Turkey, Europe, the Middle and Far East, "sharing her sharing her vibrant mix of raki laced traditional balladry, futurist surf and post-punk opposition".

Released last Friday on Glitterbeat Records, her latest full-length and third album"'İstikrarlı Hayal Hakikattir' [transl. 'Consistent Fantasy is Reality'] is a deeply poetic album; an album of personalized politics, an album that digs into the heart of our contentious, inexplicable contemporary experience. Never blinking. Always dreaming. Never giving in. Never giving up." Musically the album combines audible influences from the '60s/'70s Anatolian pop, rock and sub-genres thereof as well as Turkish folk. Also included in the diverse instrumental palette are more "conventional guitar-bass-drum trios and percussive elements, joined by violin, oud, cümbüş, bağlama, electronic beats and wind instruments". But there is a lot more to discover here as Gaye Su Akyol reveals:

"With this album I pursued new sounds in the deep waters of this geography, dug up the manifestation of my experiences, all the music, the people, the pain, the dreams and countries I have heard and was touched by, followed the footsteps of a personal archeology and tried to add my lost territories to these. [...] As a woman born and raised in Turkey, who makes her own music, who created a playground outside the masculine system by founding her own record company, who participates in every stage of this work from creation to production in a masculine dominated geography and an ever conservatized world, I think it is necessary to make these stories of 'consistent dreaming' visible and I hope to inspire other women and people who are producing and claiming their own dreams. In this sense this is an extremely feminist, revolutionary and idealist album."

Gaye Su Akyol and her band will be performing live at YAAM Berlin this Thursday (November 1, 2018), where they will lay further proof to their "growing reputation as a powerful live act", with local support from Mehmet Aslan and DJ İpek.

You can listen to the new album's title track via the Soundcloud player above or stream/buy the full album over on Bandcamp. Also, feel free to watch the companion video to the track "Yıllar Yılan" from Gaye Su Akyol's first studio album "Develerle Yaşıyorum" (2014) below.

AUTHOR: Lev Nordstrom