In 2008, Daniela Gesundheit of Snowblink moved from San Francisco to Toronto, irreversibly altering Snowblink from a whimsical warm-weather band touting four male backup singers (two of whom were MGMT) to the current acclaimed duo with Dan Goldman (Luxury Pond).
Snowblink quickly became "one of the most compelling new voices on the Canadian scene" (CBC), opening for Jeff Tweedy, Owen Pallett, Timber Timbre, Ohbijou, Great Lake Swimmers, and The Hidden Cameras on extended tours throughout the US, Canada, and Europe. The Globe and Mail describes them as "dreamy electric folk . . . a sort of deep-woods Jenny Lewis or Leslie Feist."
Snowblink's debut record, Long Live, was named an "essential release" by London's Sunday Times, and was granted four NNNN's from NOW magazine in Toronto. Long Live was recorded in California, Toronto, and Brooklyn, bringing together Gesundheit's far-reaching communities.
The collaborators and guest appearances on the record include Jay Pellicci (Deerhoof), Thom Monahan (Devendra Banhart, Vetiver), Nat Baldwin (Dirty Projectors), Frank Lyon (Keepaway), Caley Monahon-Ward (Extra Life, Larkin Grimm), visual artist Dave Wilson, writers Max Goldberg and Andrew Connors, Isla Craig (The Deeeep), and Ryan Driver.
STORY OF LONG LIVE, DEBUT ALBUM
The songs for Long Live began in Mammoth Lakes, California, a dormant volcano in the Eastern Sierras, in a family cabin that Gesundheit had frequented since childhood. She spent her time there fusing her memories of family, friends, rumination, and loss with the prodigious landscape that surrounded her.
Gesundheit uses the imagery of deer felling their antlers, of bulbs taking a winter to finally push through the soil, of erosion, of the unfathomable size of grey whales, of the folded fingers of patience being a nest to birds, of a road paved over undertow, of tired bees, of opened oysters, of leaves going from green to gone without ever turning colour, of frosts thawing to describe the way human relationships weather with time. Through her eyes we see nature and natural landscapes with human figures-- broken, vibrant, bereaved, or ecstatic-- in the foreground.
What results is a tribute album of sorts --- a tribute to the people in our lives that pass on, one way or another, and to the roaring natural landscape of California.
"[Gesundheit's] voice is extraordinary. It hangs in midair, seemingly unconnected to any human source. "
--Sunday Times, London, UK (Four out of four stars)
"A he-she pair whose dreamy electric folk music is moon-lit and stream-fed - a sort of deep-woods Jenny Lewis or Leslie Feist." Globe and Mail
"Snowblink offers shadowy folk-pop with hints of Animal Collective and old Phil Spector sides."
---TIME OUT NEW YORK
"Favorite musical discovery of the year"
"One of the most compelling new voices on the Canadian scene."
"Gesundheit's voice is truly lovely-comforting and vulnerable at the same time."
--EYE WEEKLY, FOUR STARS
"With her delicate vocals and airy melodies, she's acquired a significant fan base on both sides of the border - especially since she moved to Toronto and started playing with other talented Canadian musicians."
"One of my favorite new recordings."
--Laurie Brown, The Signal, CBC
"Rich and complex arrangements, a sensitive and singular approach to lyrics, and effortlessly fluid and sonorous vocals. Inevitably serene vocals-- her lyrics serve as a kind of gentle lance to the tension around her tales of archetypal traumas. Long Live is a sturdy new plateau, from a promising young voice."
-AQUARIUS RECORDS, San Francisco, CA
"Singer Daniela Gesundheit rocks a vocal range Kate Bush would envy."
-- CHICAGO'S GAPER'S BLOCK
Snowblink's electronically assisted space folk was easily the highlight. Led by Daniela Gesundheit, the duo pulled off brilliantly sad, eerie covers of both Dolly Parton and Michael Jackson.
--Now Magazine, Toronto (Shows that Rocked Toronto)
Reviews of shows opening for Owen Pallett in February 2010:
"This native Toronto outfit offered Aeolians a pithy set of quirky and quaint, nature-inspired numbers guilty of warming one's soul and moving one to whimsy.
Plucking a guitar equipped with deer antlers, lead singer Daniela Gesundheit showcased her sparrow's trill while partner, Dan Misha Goldman, filled in the gaps. The duo's second air, "Rut and Nuzzle," exhibited soft Feistian vocal lines punctuated by a hooky bird-watcher's call and employed the front row of the audience in ringing a long string of bells at the precise moment."
---The London Gazette
"Often, the opening band is simply tolerated and seen as that final obstacle before your favourite band comes on. I believe Snowblink was playing to a room a full of converts by the end of their set. Leading lady, Daniela Gesundheit effortlessly filled the room with her compelling and flawless voice. Each song seemed like a carefully crafted, musical poem placed lightly over top of loops, reverby guitars, keyboard and subtle back-up vocals."
---Monday Through Monday, London, ON
"Their songs are mysterious and inviting, with Gesundheit's eerily beautiful voice sounding almost mermaid-like. As excited as I was for Owen Pallet to take the stage, I didn't want Snowblink's set to end. . . . these avant-garde folkies masterfully staged a sophisticated and stylishly layered music, acting as a perfect accessory to Pallett's bill."
-- The Beat, London, ON
--Chromewaves, Toronto, ON
ADDITIONAL PRESS AND REVIEWS :
"Backbreakingly gorgeous words and their airy movements appear before us as startlingly as new colors or languages would. It's quite spectacular and right."
We are SO excited to be touring the US with Snowblink.
--OWEN PALLETT (TWITTER)
The earthy feel of Long Live, the stunning latest release from Snowblink is one that ought to be soaked in with full attention. A radiant and mystic rumbler.
Daniela Gesundheit has a rare gift, her haunting soprano voice and minimal instrumental and often just one backing musician is an absolute treat to watch live.