Posts Tagged ‘Elena Tonra’

Elena Tonra of Daughter resumes her Ex:Re moniker to present a reinterpretation of her debut solo album. “Ex:Re with 12 Ensemble”, released today, is a collaboration between Tonra, classical composer Josephine Stephenson and one of the UK’s leading string orchestras, 12 Ensemble.  Originally released in 2018, Ex:Re (pronounced “Ex Ray” and meaning “regarding Ex”) laid bare Tonra’s unfiltered internal monologue after the end of a relationship.  Containing her most personal lyrics to date and brought into being with the help of Stephenson and producer/drummer Fabian Prynn, Ex:Re struck a chord with the broken-hearted and brought closure to a chapter in Tonra’s life.

Ex:Re with 12 Ensemble reimagines and complements its predecessor.  It was recorded by Fabian Prynn during performances at Kings Place (the multi-arts venue in London’s King’s Cross neighbourhood) on the 30th November 2019, where Tonra was joined onstage by Stephenson on piano and the 12-piece string orchestra, 12 Ensemble.  

Josephine Stephenson, a celebrated composer, arranger and performer, was approached by Kings Place to curate an event for their “Venus Unwrapped” 2019 season.  Stephenson saw space in the programming for a live performance that bridged the gap between the classical and non-classical worlds, and having recently been involved with Ex:Re, collaborating once more with Tonra made perfect sense.

Stephenson’s new arrangements of the original Ex:Re album into classical form strip back the songs, heightening the emotion and vulnerability of the lyrics.  “Working with acoustic instruments was an opportunity to add subtle, yet tangible dynamic details to highlight Elena’s words.  As the Ex:Re songs are often built from loops, I enjoyed exploring the multitude of possible variations and reinventions within these, adding counter-melodies and making small changes in harmony or voicing.  After touring with the Ex:Re band for a year, I knew the songs inside out, and had already started expanding and orchestrating them in my head. I  also felt fearless knowing I was writing for the 12 Ensemble, who are all exceptionally talented musicians and comfortable in all sorts of genres.“

Tonra and Stephenson found respite in the recordings months after the Kings Place performance.  “We were mixing the record while concerts and events around the world were being cancelled and postponed, so it was really moving to listen to the audio over and over during that time.  The sound of a room filled with people was, and is, something we were all greatly missing” says Tonra.  Ex:Re with 12 Ensemble, mixed by Jonathan Lefèvre-Reich, warps the space between audience and performer.  It places the listener in the centre of the music, surrounded by a semi-circular wall of string sounds, to recreate the experience of the performance from up close.  “There is also some magic in there” says Tonra, “Jonathan added some beautiful moments of story-telling in the mix.  On ‘New York’, for example, the strings suddenly feel as though they are dripping down the sides of your head.”


Ex:Re  the solo recordings of Elena Tonra from Daughter – is now available worldwide on vinyl and CD, after the digital release of the album late last year.

The album was Rough Trade’s Album of the Month, and they will be celebrating by offering an exclusive limited blue pressing of the vinyl with a free CD featuring live versions of four tracks recorded at Hoxton Hall, London in November 2018.

Last month Tonra shared the stunning visuals for ‘The Dazzler’.  Directed by Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard (creators of Daughter’s triptych of videos for their second record Not To Disappear), the video imagines ‘The Dazzler’ as the hotel depicted in Tonra’s lyrics and places the magnificent British actress Maxine Peake languishing alone in one of its rooms (with cameo appearance from Tonra). Running parallel to Daughter, Tonra has assumed the pseudonym Ex:Re (pronounced ex ray) for her eponymously-titled debut solo album, a deeply personal record that was made with both a sense of urgency and a cathartic need.

“A spacious, raw record.” – Q
“The overall effect is immersive, wallowing, sad but often beautiful.” – Uncut
“Fascinating but demanding debut.” – MOJO
“An album that’s fully formed, rich and deeply affecting.” – DIY
“A beautifully understated mood piece and Tonra’s finest work to date, with or without the band.”
– Loud And Quiet

Elena said of the album, “Although the record is written for someone, a lot of the time it’s about the space without that person in it.  In every scenario, there’s either the person in memory or the noticeable absence of that person in the present moment.  I suppose it is a break-up record, however I do not talk about the relationship at all, and he hardly features in the scenes.  He is only felt as a ghostly presence.”

Tonra’s candid solo songs document the time after a relationship ended and are written like unsent letters to herself and others.  Taking on a creative moniker, she chose Ex:Re to mean ‘regarding ex’ and also ‘X-Ray’ as a way to look inside and see what is really there.  Writing took a year but the recording process lasted mere months, turning to Fabian Prynn (4AD’s in-house engineer and producer) and composer Josephine Stephenson on cello to help bring Ex:Reto life.

Ex:Re’s first single ‘Romance’ its accompanying video (directed by Antonia Luxem

Taken from Ex:Re’s self titled debut album, digitally out now on 4AD & Glassnote Records.

Image may contain: 1 person, night

Elena Tonra is the singer, songwriter and guitarist for Daughter. This is her first album for the new project that she runs simultaneously alongside Daughter. The album was recorded with Fabian Prynn (4AD producer/engineer) with Josephine Stephenson on cello and inspired by a shattered relationship. ‘Romance’ is the first single taken from Ex:Re’s self titled debut album, digitally out now on 4AD & Glassnote Records.

Running parallel to Daughter, Elena has assumed the pseudonym Ex:Re(pronounced ex ray) for her eponymously-titled debut solo album. The 10-track album Ex:Re out now.

Warm, rattling, reassuring strings, tickling percussive beats and rhythms. Soft soothing vocals pair with warm strings, wrapping themselves around the vocals and hugging the strings of your heart. Sliding, picked strings match heartbeat rhythm pulses. The intimate, warm sound of home. Mood is turned into an instrument and a feeling of closeness surrounds you. Eastern tinges edge into the music, climbing vocals and sinuous, resonating drums. An eloquent tale, a catharsis of feeling. The sound of a heart breaking is something to fall in love with.

Elena has said of the album,“Although the record is written for someone, a lot of the time it’s about the space without that person in it. In every scenario, there’s either the person in memory or the noticeable absence of that person in the present moment. I suppose it is a break-up record, however I do not talk about the relationship at all, and he hardly features in the scenes. He is only felt as a ghostly presence.”


Daughter’s original music score for the videogame ‘Life is Strange: Before the Storm’, will be given an official vinyl release as part of Record Store Day on 21st april, 2018.

‘music from before the storm’, which was released digitally last year to coincide with the game’s release, will be made available as a limited-edition double-lp with a gatefold sleeve, and features additional artwork by lindsay mcdonagh. ‘Before the Storm’ is the prequel to ‘Life is Strange’, the hugely successful bafta award winning narrative driven game released in 2015. boundary-breaking, with principal characters tackling real life issues such as bullying, suicide and teen pregnancy, the episodic series has garnered plaudits, whilst daughter’s soundtrack was celebrated by both music and videogame fans. Daughter is the London-based trio of Elena Tonra, Igor Haefeli and Remi Aguilella. established in 2010, the band have gained a loyal fanbase, playing to sold-out audiences around the world. their two albums, the silver-certified If You Leave (2013) and 2016’s Not To Disappear both debuted in the top 20 of the uk album charts. limited to 2000 copies for the uk and ireland.

Before The Storm is the prequel to Life Is Strange, the hugely successful BAFTA award-winning narrative driven game released in 2015.  It was a boundary-breaking video game, with principal characters drawn from real life facing everyday issues, touching upon difficult situations such as bullying, suicide, teen pregnancy as well as tackling the complexities of love and friendship.  The original game was celebrated for the strength of its music, and Daughter’s involvement in the next instalment is a brilliant continuation in the franchise’s development.


Daughter Live in concert at the BBC 6 Music Festival in Bristol this past weekend. Getting started in 2010, and with a critically acclaimed debut album in 2013, Daughter have risen quickly in popularity with audiences as well as the press. Described variously as Indie/Folk/Ambient and Pop, but leaning heavily in the ambient direction, the band is fueled by the heady-emotion-filled songs of Elena Tonra, and have struck on a winning combination, creating a luxuriant soundscape to compliment what has been characterized as a unique sonic landscape.

Since their debut, they have issued some four eps, three singles and album, Not To Disappear, which was released this past January 2016 to worldwide sales,

This years BBC 6 Music Festival in Bristol, which has been a feast of great and diverse music. In 2013 they were just starting to get notice and recognition. In the 3 years since, they have grown (as any band would, given the amount of hard work and touring they put in) and the effort has paid off. What is presented now is a polished and accomplished band; assured and comfortable with a capacity audience.

So this latest installment in the ongoing story of Daughter continues to be the success they’ve achieved in the past three years. From the sounds of it, there appears to be no letup and 2016 should be another good year for them.

Daughter – February 14th, 2016
BBC 6 Music Festival, Bristol, England, UK

Doing the Right Thing
New Ways

When it came time for British three-piece Daughter to make videos for their new album, “Not to Disappear,” they sent three songs to writer Stuart Evers (“Ten Stories About Smoking”). Evers then wrote three short stories, which were then used as the basis for the videos “Doing the Right Thing,” “Numbers” and now “How,” which premieres on Speakeasy today.

The band released three respective short films for the tracks. Though all are linked by one motif, the films can be enjoyed on their own or sequentially. You can read about the experiences of all involved, the meaning behind the stories that inspired the films, and find-behind the-scenes photos from the video shoots below, along with the music videos themselves.

The story that inspired the video for “How” is called “5,040,” which refers to the number of ways the woman in the video can lock her door. One day, she decides to get the courage up and go out into the world, where an eerie scene takes place on a beach.

“I love the fact that it wasn’t necessarily about the song,” says Daughter guitarist/vocalist Elena Tonra. “There’s a surreal army of women in red dresses that turn toward her. It feels quite nightmarish.”

For all three videos, Daughter tapped filmmakers Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard to create the visuals, with the common thread being a red dress seen in each clip. In “How,” it’s a symbol “up for interpretation.”

“There’s a lot of texture that we use,” Tonra says of the band’s music. “We all love film and we’re very excited about the idea that people would want to use our music to put for visuals.”

Daughter is gearing up for a North American tour in support of “Not to Disappear,” starting in March opening in Philadelphia.

“Not to Disappear” is out now on Glassnote Records. Watch the videos for “Doing the Right Thing” and “Numbers” .


Numbers is taken from Daughter’s second LP, “Not To Disappear”, to be released on 15th January via 4AD/Glassnote Records.

Not To Disappear has crept right up our list of records we’re looking forward to since the band’s recent show at St Johns Church in Hackney, a triumph which showed they’ve found the balance between the delicate, tender nuances we love the band for and a little extra oomph which enhances the live experience. We really, really, loved it and Numbers stood out, with its thunderous bass and rattling drums. It’s a little softer on the release, so, if you like your music with a little kick in the chest make sure you head out to one of their forthcoming live shows.

Nearly three years after the release of their debut ‘If You Leave’, Daughter – the London-based trio of Elena Tonra, Igor Haefeli and Remi Aguilella – will return in 2016 with a new album, entitled ‘Not To Disappear’.

‘Not To Disappear’ is Daughter’s second album and finds the band making confident strides forward both sonically and lyrically. Elena, Igor and Remi spent a summer in New York recording ‘Not To Disappear‘ with Nicolas Vernhes (Deerhunter, War On Drugs, Animal Collective) at his Rare Book Room studio in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.

It’s been a while since we have felt as emotionally pulled apart after listening to the band Daughter. Poignancy and poetry is the name of the game for this band and they manage to deliver that with a fragility that is both beguiling and unnerving. Daughter have a new track, it’s straight back to business with the new single ‘Doing the Right Thing’ a deeply emotional tale about growing old, which is complimented by an even more emotionally charged video

It not only the first we have heard for sometime but it also announces the band’s return to live shows , Elena, Igor & Remi will play three special headline shows in the UK this November.

16th – GLASGOW, Art School
18th – BRISTOL, Trinity
19th – LONDON, St. John at Hackney Church

Tickets go on general sale this Friday, 2nd Oct. An exclusive fan pre-sale is available via Songkick 24 hours before on Thursday, 1st Oct. Go here for further information:

Daughter’s new album ‘Not To Disappear’ is released on the 15th January 2016 via 4AD/Glassnote.

The single comes with the imminent release of the new LPNot to Disappear” produced by Nicolas Vernhes it is likely to be another piece of atmospheric beauty with humanity and vulnerability.



I am hearing this on BBC adverts all the time,It is a song that really sticks in your mind, taken from the early EP “The Wild Youth”  check out the wonderful debut album “If You Leave” on 4AD Records, Elean Tonra Hushed Dreamy vocals added to the guitars of Igor Haefell and later added drummer Remi Aquilella



the amazing Daughter played a set at Coachella they have a new Live ep released today with tracks recorded at Air Studios in London with a string Ensemble

ab older track performed at the Coachella festival last weekend DAUGHTER have released three Eps and one album to date IF YOU LEAVE signed to 4ad they have a new Ep out noe five songs recorded at Air Studios with a classical string ensemble