FAUN combines medieval & ancient instruments with modern influences to create an enchanting and powerful atmosphere. The band's performance incorporates many different instruments, including the Celtic harp, nyckelharpa, various lutes, the bagpipes, large Japanese taiko drums, cister, the violin, flutes and even Arabic instruments like dombra, rebab, riq, oud, darabukka and bendir, as well as the melodic vocal section going from solo folk-like and often ambient melodies to chant-like and always enchanting vocal performances with the two female and frontman Oliver s.tyr vocalists combining something truelly magical. Influences of Celtic & Nordic folk and medieval music draws an ever fast growing crowd of followers
The ensemble FAUN was founded in early 2002 in Munich and has performed at more than 600 locations, festivals, concert halls and churches throughout the world.
Celtic Radio Contributor Review:
FAUN has finally released a new CD, and in this reviewer's humble opinion, it was well worth the wait.
Entitled "Eden", the composition is a collection of ballads, lullabies and dances that takes the listener on a romp through the Garden of Eden and beyond. The album is filled with poetry and joy as well as melancholy, taking you by the hand to lead you by cool waters, over green meadows and rolling hills, and even leads you to carefully tiptoe by a darker presence.
From the very beginning of the CD you are drawn in by the haunting melodies that permeate this musical story. Not only bringing their offerings of lilting, soulful harmonies, Oliver s. Tyr, Fiona Rüddeberg and Margareta Eibl also stun the listener with their multi-talented instrumental repertoire. Add to the mix the pounding beats from Latin-trained percussionist Rüdiger Maul, as well as the mixing and synthesizing genius of Niel Mitra, and Faun's "Eden" is a true tribute to the heavenly musical gifts that leave us mere mortals sitting in gaping appreciation.
Let me offer a brief song synopsis:
Lupercalia -- The perfect beginning to draw you in, Fiona and Margareta bring to the table a platter of tempting morsels sure to tempt you to stay for more.
Zeitgeist -- As Lupercalia drew you into the album, this one keeps you there. In Zeitgeist (loosely translated as "the tides and times"), Oliver lends his beautiful vocals as Rüdiger keeps the pace moving along with his percussive talents. This song is the only one on the album that has a more modern feel to it.
Iduna -- A joyful hand-clapper, "Iduna" is one of those rare songs that crosses cultures, bringing everyone to their feet to dance elatedly around the campfire.
The Butterfly -- As the name implies, this is an instrumental flutter through a meadow, darting from buttercup to orchid. It ends abruptly, though, leaving me with the impression the butterfly met up with a bullfrog.
Adam Lay Ybounden -- Along with amazing harmonizations, tambourines and flutes give this a renaissance faire flair. My favorite.
Hymn to Pan -- Oliver starts this one, his voice lulling you to join Pan and the nymphs in a twirl around the faerie glen. You can actually hear him smiling as he sings.
Pearl -- While this beauty has a Hebrew influence, it's quite amazing how well the bagpipes fit into this one. A real tribute to the instrumental talents of the group.
Oyneng Yar -- Rüdiger shines on this one with über-drums. Circle the wagons; this is going to be a wild Gypsy party.
Polska fran anderson -- Another talent-showcasing instrumental that leaves you breathlessly in awe of the group's amazing abilities.
Alba -- This gem is haunting. While no translation is necessary to understand the sadness and remorse evident in Oliver's storytelling, this one makes me wish I had taken German instead of conversational Spanish in school.
Ynis Avalach -- A montage of many of the different instruments the band members play, again the listener will be stunned by the group's plethora of talent.
Arcadia -- A bolder dance with a slight mid-east taste, Fiona and Rairda vocally skip through the meadow on this one as images of a storm brewing dart through the listener's mind.
The Market Song -- Oliver is joined by Fiona and Rairda to relate the sights and sounds of market day. Fiona's bagpipes take flight mid-song, switching to flute near the end, adding a real Celtic design to this.
Golden Apples -- If Arcadia reminds one of a pending storm, the first impression of Golden Apples is the cleansed earth after the after the storm. Beginning with birds sweetly chirping, the melody quickly changes to something darker. I could almost see the serpent slithering around the tree as he tempted Eve. A perfect ending to this treasure.
Celtic Radio Contributor