Tegan Northwood

Tegan Northwood

BandAlternativePop

alternative electronica, jangly guitars, and natural sound ambiences; pure vocals. New album released early 2007; 1st track "Herald" is from this.

Biography

Tegan Northwood is a singer-songwriter who creates songs and sound pieces that span several genres, from alternative pop to ambient electronica to experimental. She has recorded and released two albums between 1994 and 2000 and is in pre-production for her third album now.

A standout feature of Tegan’s music lies in the ethereal character of her voice and her distinctive sense of harmony and vocal arrangements. Her voice has been likened to Liz Frazer (Cocteau Twins), Harriet Wheeler (The Sundays), Bjork, and Sydney’s Robyne Dunne. Coupled with this is a production style which makes use of the layering and mixing of multiple sound sources, vocals, electronic instruments, guitars and effects. Tegan has often used her voice in an exploratory way as well as the main melodic focus, but over the years her vocal style has become more direct and to the fore of the music.

- Aer Purus, released in 1994, was co-written in part with Tim James (Feverdream) while living in Melbourne, and also included solo guitar and electronic compositions of Tegan’s. Characterised by soaring guitar and vocal sounds, it was recorded and mixed at Birdland Studios.

- After relocating to Sydney in 1996, Tegan formed the ambient vocal group Lumania, performing around Sydney during ’96-97. Singers Lauren Freedman (later with Magic Lunchbox), Jacqueline Freeman (Orchid, singer-songwriter) and Tara Millet (later with Morgana and the Monstars) performed Tegan’s free-form, phonetic vocal compositions through effects.

- In 1997 Tegan met and worked with studio owner and engineer Shane Fahey, doing programming for clients of Meghaphon Studios. She’s since contributed vocals, guitar and programming to albums by various artists, including Jodi Phillis (ex-Clouds), Robyne Dunne, Single Gun Theory, Diana Ah Naid, Stevie Wishart, Social Interiors, Matt Tonks and UK producer Pete Helmsley.

- Whilst working on Social Interiors’ contribution to their label’s 10th anniversary compilation, Extreme’s Untitled (ten), Tegan was influenced by sound pieces that were based largely on field recordings of natural and found sound.

- Her next album, Self Raising Flower, was released independently in 2000. Apart from a few tracks recorded and mixed at Megaphon Studios by Shane Fahey, she produced, recorded and mixed it herself. This album was a collection of Tegan’s vocal pieces, sound pieces, plus guitar and electronic-based pop songs, eclectic yet cohesive.

“Really interesting stuff...exploratory in the most caressing of ways, the music swirling languid and warm beneath the limpid melodies. It’s about atmosphere and evocation, even when the programming gives way to the contrapuntal a cappella harmonies of Dance Ahead and So, perhaps the closest Tegan gets to anything Celtic or Enya-like, just gorgeous…” (Michael Smith, Drum Media)

Over the last few years Tegan has further explored compositions made from natural sound recordings, and how sound can provide and carry healing. Her new album will be released through Endgame Records in early 2007.

Discography

Aer Purus (independent, cassette) (1994)
Self Raising Flower (independent, CD) (2000)