Isnaj Dui is Katie English. In 2007, Mike from Smallfish Records gave me a copy of her 'Amacrine' release which became an absolute favourite of ours over the next year. Even in such an incredible line-up as Smallfish had, it was easily one of their finest ever releases, and we decided that we wanted her to make an album for one of the first Home Normal releases. 'Unstable Equilibrium' was met with critical acclaim, and noted as one of the releases of the year in places like Boomkat, The Wire, Mojo, and more.
Since then, Katie has performed at most of the UK based Home Normal events and also very kindly helped to run them. She regularly performs in the UK, showing off her incredible talents as a multi-instrumentalist whether as a solo or group performer. In 2013 she collaborated on the Orla Wren release 'Book Of The Folded Forest' for Home Normal. This culminated in her live collaboration with Orla Wren at the HomeNormalism festival in August 2013.
Finally, in her busy schedule, she somehow finds time to run the well established 'Recluse' nights in London, as well as running her own Fbox Records label.
Here's a great video by Gianmarco Del Re from the Isnaj Dui performance at the Home Normal / Hibernate show at Dalston Vic in December 2011:
Here's a little more information about Isnaj Dui:
Standing somewhere between neo-impressionism and electronica, Isnaj Dui (real name Katie English) conveys a minimal yet capturing sound using electronically manipulated flutes and homemade instruments. Cited as a distinct voice, taking the flute away from its pastoral image whilst maintaining its unique mellow sound, English has released several critically acclaimed albums including 2010's Protective Displacement (Rural Colours) and Unstable Equilibrium (Home Normal, 2009). She has appeared at venues such as the National Portrait Gallery and Union Chapel in London and has received extensive play on Radio 3's Late Junction and BBC 6 Music.
As a classically trained flautist, English has also studied electroacoustic music, alternative tunings and Balinese gamelan. Working without laptop processing, English uses the pure tones of concert and bass flutes alongside homemade dulcimers and electronics to create immersive yet restrained textures that weave in and out of each other.
As well as her solo work, Katie plays in Littlebow, The Doomed Bird of Providence and has collaborated live and on record with Orla Wren, Hybernation and The Owl Service amongst others.
Other people seem to think very highly of her too:
Boomkat (album of the week) 'Absolutely gorgeous music and a big recommendation for followers of [Home Normal] and good music everywhere.'
Smallfish (recommended) 'Truly a delight to listen to and something that is both familiar and strangely exotic sounding. You’re unlikely to hear another album quite like this in the near future and for that we must be thankful that Isnaj Dui is out there doing her own thing.'
Textura November 2009 '...an oft-beautiful exercise in sensuous tone-painting that, in seemingly effortless manner, not only distinguishes itself from the competition but establishes Isnaj Dui as a distinctive artistic voice.'
Wire (Keith Moline) 2007 '...English manages to take the [flute] into darker realms while maintaining a lovely, sleepy languor.'
Nils Frahm 'Deeply inspiring music from a very, very special place'
You can buy Isnaj Dui releases from her Bandcamp page here:
She also runs the excellent Fbox Records label and Recluse nights in London. You can find more information on the Fbox site here:
You can stream, share and buy 'Unstable Equilibrium' here:
You can stream, share and buy 'Book Of The Folded Forest' by Orla Wren here:
You can stream, share and buy one of our absolute favourite Isnaj Dui releases, Duodecim, here: