Back in 2001 SIGMATROPIC had the idea to create a sprawling and magical musical trip: a musical accompaniment to an imaginary journey. The album " 16 Haiku & Other Stories " is based on the Japanese chopped up poetry style Haiku. But this isn't just any poetry. This music is based on the work of the great Nobel laureate GEORGE SEFERIS. His Haiku poetry, in which he had adopted in his early life, was an ideal inspiration to a musical adventure that involves all the elements of nature.
The wisdom & simplicity of these short poems float around the embracing music in a carefree manner. Anyone that has travelled through the majestic Aegean and experienced the sea and stars will clearly identify with SEFERIS'S colourful observations. AKIS BOYATZIS is the nucleus of SIGMATROPIC and has created an atmospheric musical odyssey that invites this poetry wordplay. His programming skills weave an ethereal spell full of Spartan peaks and bleak terrains. The voiceovers float around like a magic wand spelling out stories about colours, nature and the seasons. The soundtrack " feel " quality of this recording is grainy and mystical and ideally compliments the masterful poetry.
After this album was released in its original format in Greek, early 2002, spurred on with its success AKIS BOYATZIS stuck his neck out enough to boldly extend an invitation to overseas musicians: to recreate the spirit of this album, retaining the same music with the same poetry translated into English. And thus here is the English version of his original dream. Eighteen vocalists from diverse musical backgrounds and from far flung cities, each choosing and singing their favourite Haiku. Each individual vocal is a sparkling testament that has enriched this international project, which features an outstanding and diverse range of cult alternative vocalists from both sides of the Atlantic, instantly making this one of the greatest albums ever to come out of Greece.
Together with SIGMATROPIC & AKIS BOYATZIS the full guest vocal line up for " 16 Haiku & Other Stories " is a truly awesome musical motley crew:
CAT POWER, MARK EITZEL, ALEJANDRO ESCOVEDO, ALEX GORDON (Lincoln), JOHN GRANT (The Czars), EDITH FROST, HOWE GELB, JAMES WILLIAM HINDLE, SIMON JOYNER, PINKIE MACLURE, MARK MULCAHY, LEE RANALDO, MARTINE ROBERTS (Broken Dog), LAETITIA SADIER (Stereolab),JAMES SCLAVUNOS (Nick Cave & Bad Seeds / The Vanity Set), CARLA TORGENSON (Walkabouts), ROBERT WYATT, STEVE WYNN.
* The finished album will include a little film ditty with SIGMATROPIC, & friends fooling around on the legendary island of Patmos. Apart from AKIS BOYATZIS'S " colourful " shirt and Julia the odd donkey, you will also spot CARLA TORGERSON as well. It is a little musical taster to what is on the album.
* Initial quantities of the album will carry a bonus disc that will feature alternate version and remixes that are not of the album. Artists scheduled to be on the bonus disc are ROBERT WYATT, EDITH FROST, HOWE GELB & CARLA TORGERSON.
* At the time of the album release an exclusive 12-inch single will also be issued. This limited edition single will contain exclusive vocal versions & takes that are not featured on the album. Artists scheduled to have their alternate versions featured are EDITH FROST, JAMES WILLIAM HINDLE, MARK MULCAHY & CARLA TORGERSON.