After… “Life” Fhloston Paradigm feat. Pia Ercole

Written on . Posted in Blog


“…Life” featuring Pia Ercole

Purchase on iTunes

“King Britt’s future forward project Fhloston Paradigm has been his focus since 2012. The inaugural full album of this project, The Phoenix, debuted on the dynamic label Hyperdub in 2014. Organically over the past five years, this project has seen various incarnations in prestigious places including the MoMA PS1 (NYC), MoCAD (Detroit), XOYO (London), and Womb (Japan). Fhloston Paradigm has also received humbling and beautiful reviews by respected press including The WirePitchfork, and FactTV. King Britt’s new album After… is the continuation of the story… ascension and polyrhythmic primal energy through unexpected process.”


the Vocalise in “…Life” and the afterlife

Written on . Posted in Blog

[jwplayer mediaid=”717″]

I’ve seen death twice. Human death.

Once in the face of my father. Years later, in the face of my mother.

……How do you come back from that?

You wait.

You float…as time finally brings you back to the surface to breathe.

Mom was as graceful in her death as she was in life.

I had learned of the musical decrescendo and ritardando when I was a child studying piano: to gradually decrease in volume and in pace. It was often a way to end a piece…beautifully and with elegance.

As I watched my mother’s breath, there was a steady decrescendo and ritardando. Her life force moved with two last, faint breaths, and her body was done.

This…is where I sing from–having bore witness to the unthinkable–but not just the pain of these experiences. There is a massive, vast depth to the pain, and in these depths I have tasted infinity where also dwells the endless beauty and joy that makes life worthwhile, enchanting, and full with ecstasy. Where devastation carves you out, I imagine beauty and love fill you in.

So, music…comes from life. The range of pitch, pace and volume in the natural world informs the nuance of the music we create. More specifically, cultures come to dictate the fabric and structure of music as we know it. When I make music, I am musically influenced by all of the music I have ever heard. When I come to sing I am the human as instrument making sound with my voice as a language of its own. Before we had the systems of symbols that make up language, we had our musicality. We were musical beings, and with a certain musical phrase we could communicate a desire…reveal an emotion…not defined as jazz or classical or any style and genre we try to confine sound to today.

This is why I am in love with the vocalise: “a vocal passage consisting of a melody without words”. I can tell you my stories, and infuse my sound with my emotion most intimately in a vocalise. There are secrets to discover in the sound: without words, I’m not forcing any specific mode of comprehension or interpretation, nor a fixed time in which they are revealed to the listener. No richness of the expression is lost to the constraints of language. What is any tone without a word? What does it mean objectively? Nothing. But, how does it make you feel? This is where my focus lies.

King Britt invited each singer on this album to arrive at the music he had composed with only their heart but no less than their truth. Coming to the music he had written for “…Life”, I entered its hallways and rooms with my voice…no words. I recorded my vocals as three entities: Humana, Spirita, and Machina: the human that has experienced this life thus far, my spirit self that lives and flies in dreams, and these two entities married to the reality of the machine. There are cries, lullabies, and a highest register (Machina) where my voice is flipped to a range beyond that which I can produce.

With the album “After…” as a prefix, the full title of this piece is truly “Afterlife”—so fitting since I, and my sound, are in essence my parents’ afterlife. I continue when and where they could not. Singing on this track and past music for Fhloston Paradigm has brought me great solace and purpose in processing and expressing the enormity of all that unfolds in this life.

Please listen and enjoy your journey with this sound. Love always, Pia.


RELEASE OF “Thank You Enough (Lullaby @ 96BPM)”

Written on . Posted in Blog

A song with Dotmatic as The Kinesiis Project on his album Lullabies for Fall for Record Breakin’ Music. (Pia Ercole on vocals and keys. Lyrics and co-produced by Pia Ercole.)

“Dotmatic [released the conclusion in his Lullabies series on October 29th, 2012], Lullabies for Fall. The ending of one thing, as usual, is the beginning of another and such is the case with Dotmatic. We’re introduced to his collaborative effort with Pia Ercole as The Kinesiis Project, which sounds terrific and definitely has us wanting more! …Prepare for The Kinesiis Project.”

Link to album on iTunes


The Phoenix – The Journey

Written on . Posted in Blog

The Phoenix - Vinyl- Full Gatefold

King Britt and I had been having ongoing conversations about music for quite some time when he asked me if I wanted to collaborate with him. Two years ago he sent me a track, “Tension Remains”, for which he wanted operatic vocals.

It was an interesting situation: although I had trained classically, I hadn’t been interested in devoting my musical career to opera. I couldn’t marry the art form—I wasn’t in love. I did love the art of the song, however, in whichever incarnations it manifested, whether it was a chanson by Debussy, an exotic folk tune, a jazz standard, or even an aria from an opera standing on its own. I also loved improvising melodies and harmonies over any purely instrumental music whether it was orchestral, electronic, or perhaps solo piano–it didn’t matter. I was most interested in classical technique serving simple, honest, and beautiful singing devoid of histrionics.

I took this as the perfect opportunity to compose a vocal line(s) that would harken to the operatic beauty of the aria “Oh, giusto cielo!…Il dolce suono” from Gaetano Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor, sung by the character, Diva Plavalaguna in the movie The Fifth Element. I had no interest in caricaturizing the “blue alien”. I was guided first and foremost by the music that King had composed. Its story dictated every nuance of my phrasing and sound rather than any genre-specific tradition.

For the first time, with King, I felt like I had the sonic soundscape with the proper breadth and range to support and inspire my more “operatic” voice. With “Tension Remains”, King had scored an epic scene of post-apocalyptic ruin within which I would represent the beauty of the human spirit and also the pain, sadness, and longing, all of which are part of the human experience. My mother had just died some months before, and the ache was fresh. I drew on it to translate devastation and beauty through my voice and melodies.

 “Letters of Past” and “Its All About” followed. With these tracks King had scored more of the tale, and I sang to suite the sonic vibe of the scenes.

It’s so wonderful to see the release of King Britt’s amazing work and to be a part of it alongside Rachel Claudio, Natasha Kmeto, and Marlo Reynolds. I’m very excited for the world to share in Fhloston Paradigm through this recording and Fhloston Paradigm live performances!