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Get to know ANOHNI

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Get to know former lead singer of Antony and the Johnsons, the incomparable ANOHNI, who performs at this year's Edinburgh International Festival.

In a dark auditorium a hooded figure stands fast in her place, reciting lyrics that tell of the world’s mass human evils. This is ANOHNI.

Behind her, a montage of women’s faces flash across a screen, mouthing noiselessly along with the words. 

ANOHNI’s magnificent voice floats eerily over the twisted, desolate landscape painted by electronic heavyweights Oneohtrix Point Never and Hudson Mohawke.

The result is visually, sonically and emotionally arresting.

Formerly Antony Hegarty, ANOHNI used to lead the Mercury Prize winning group Antony and the Johnsons, a band that were known for their avant-garde performances.

Stylistically, ANOHNI’s new album, Hopelessness, is a vast leap from her previous work; scrapping the peaceful chamber pop in favour of a synth-laden wonderland.

In all of her work, however, ANOHNI has a knack for being emotionally direct.

Part of this is certainly to do with the disarming beauty of her voice – but Hopelessness displays her frank, straight-to-the-point lyrics when addressing global warming, terrorism and mass surveillance. She is not afraid to pick a fight.

ANOHNI performs at the International Festival on 17 August with Hopelessness collaborators, Hudson Mohawke and Oneohtrix Point Never: one is a producer for Kanye West; the other an electronic polymath.

This is no regular gig.  Expect a performance art piece that questions just how directly music can speak to you. 

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