Album of the Week: Christine Ott’s Tabu

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tabuAfter many years of touring it as a ciné-concert performance, Christine Ott finally found a home for her Tabu, releasing it on Gizeh Records for its Dark Peak Series.

In it, the French musician, who worked with Yann Tiersen and Radiohead, among others, reworks the score and soundtrack for F. W. Murnau and Robert Flaherty’s 1931 silent movie of the same name. Unlike the original orchestral sound, Ott’s version is a minimalist piano composition. Flowing soft and ethereal through the eighteen tracks that mark the film runtime, what may seem a basic and simple piano arrangement reveals itself in all its expressive possibilities, helped by the peculiar sound of the ondes Martenot, an early electronic musical instrument invented in 1928 by Maurice Martenot, similar to a theremin.

A great sonic experience, superb when accompanied by the movie, and also extremely interesting and enjoyable as a stand-alone album. Watch the album’s trailer and listen to a few tracks after the break.


Guia Cortassa was born, lives, and works in Milan, Italy. After working as a Contemporary Art curator, she went back to writing. She is a contributing editor for Ondarock and her writing has appeared on Rivista Studio, Flair and the Quietus. She compulsively tweets @gcmorvern. More from this author →