The ability to write music that can seize attention or fade into the background equally well is a unique skill, and Christina Vantzou has it in abundance—no surprise for a creator who started in visual art, film and animation. Originally from Kansas City, Missouri, and now based in Belgium, Vantzou honed her feel for diaphanous meditations and luminous reverie in the Dead Texan with Stars of the Lid member Adam Wiltzie, then started creating her own intricate, sampler-based music. Connecting with Magik*Magik Orchestra's Minna Choi, Vantzou made No. 1, an achingly lovely collection of postclassical chamber music issued by Kranky in 2011.
Appearing this week as part of the dinner-at-an-exhibition series Monkey Town 3, Vantzou joins members of the American Contemporary Music Ensemble in gorgeous, haunting material slated for the forthcoming No. 2, plus a Clint Mansell arrangement, all accompanied by new films. Sharing the bill is Brooklyn troubadour CC Carana, whose arty warble floats sweetly through subtly akimbo terrain.—Steve Smith
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