Opera News: The Echo Drift
Karlsson’s music is a haunting mixture of acoustic and electronic sound. The vocal line is through-composed and lyrical, effectively conveying the text. His colorful music covers the spectrum from the tonal through the very dissonant, all the way to pure noise. In all these varied utterances, the music is fully at the service of the drama. The libretto by de Voss and Walat is clever, ironic and at times disturbing. At first I was troubled by the loud, rather boxy sound-enhancement, but I came to realize that this was a deliberate and well-made choice to convey the brutal oppressiveness and sinister atmosphere of the piece.
The International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE) played magnificently under the zealous direction of conductor Nicholas DeMaison.