Friendly Folk Records
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Touches - 'I speak with my mouth shut' is a creation of composer Jyoti Verhoeff and producer Fieke van den Hurk. 

Each composition is centered around the grand piano. Although all recordings are an acoustic keyed instrument you will be surprised how a bit of preparation of the instruments and some unique microphone settings can change the acoustic sound into a very electronic feel. A lot of experimental room was allowed for distortion of the sound by playing the keys of the grand piano with drumsticks, iron, horsehair, tapping the strings or using metal on the strings for sound effects.

The recordings took place in Studio The Church. An amazing and inspiring studio with an endless amount of beautiful keyed instruments available, such as a grand piano, spinet, celesta, klavier-accordeon, harmonium and much more. 

Touches is a neo-classical experiment in delicate symbiosis with modern technique. A carefully balanced search with a pure acoustic sound where one note can grow into many worlds.




  • OOR OOR —


Composed by Jyoti Verhoeff
Arranged by Jyoti Verhoeff and Fieke van den Hurk
Produced by Fieke van den Hurk
Recorded and mixed by Fieke van den Hurk
Mastered by Darcy Proper at Wisseloord Studios

Graphic design by Fieke van den Hurk
Cover photography by Sander van den Berg
Recording studio photography by Willem Schalekamp and Fieke van den Hurk

All of the music was recorded in the winter of 2016-2017 at Studio The Church. The recordings were mixed at Dearworld Studio throughout the spring and fall of 2017.

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The Concept 

The album ‘TOUCHES - I speak with my mouth shut‘ questions the way humans relate to the world around them, to each other, and to themselves. Instead of using all of the senses, more and more of our interactions consist solely of words (spoken or written or on glowing screens). The word has become more or less completely disposable. People never stop talking. While putting so much significance on words, a lot of our communication is left out, hollowed out, made shallow. 

You know about the magic of looking someone in the eyes, you know about body language, about intuition, about the strong message of conscious silence. The way society has developed caused those primal, inherently human skills to slowly and silently disappear into the background. If you only turn to words for exchanging information, it will inevitably make it more difficult to see reality. 

People are no longer consciously using the most important ancient way of communication. In fact words are the easiest way to mislead and deceive others. Some also use them to create a shield behind which they hide their vulnerability and fears. 

We have developed a habit of expressing our opinion about everything. The more often someone says something, the less meaningful it becomes. And verbal exchanges, the value of articles, blogs, comments and posts diminishes. They become like noise in audio.

Why do we want to speak?  

The ego needs constant maintaining. It wants to assert itself. 

But sometimes it is better to just be silent.

It all seems to be mixed up in service of the need for a corrupt system that doesn't know anymore how to be natural and vulnerable. You don’t always need to say something. What about the value of your presence, your feelings, movements and touches from your body, a scent… they can speak volumes in the blink of an eye. While words can say everything without having any meaning. The competence of a speaker has no relevance to the truth.

We have an urge to define everything. This is this, and that is that. And this is not that and that is not this. Binary opposition keeps things the way they are. It keeps those in power in power.

Greed has corrupted language and this has made it difficult to use words properly.  

Words bring a huge responsibility to those who use them, which is not necessarily a bad thing. Writers for example, create entirely new worlds and make us experience and feel them through their stories. But … are you still able to hear beyond words? I dare you to lower your shield and to question the way you communicate. 

‘TOUCHES’ refers to the English verb that means ‘to touch, to connect, to affect’. At the same time in French its meaning is ‘keys‘; incorporating the restriction Fieke and I put on ourselves by working with acoustic keyed instruments only. The use of sound distortion is an analogy to the noise that comes with thoughts and words. Sometimes you might still recognise an instrument's original sound, but other times the distortion has altered it beyond recognition. 

The messages transmitted by TOUCHES are carried solely by the music. Sound is the vibration of air, countless little particles in flux, transferring energy directly and pure, full of information not only received by the ears and the brain. 

Allow yourself to fall backwards, get absorbed into the music and discover what you can decode. 

I am reaching out to you.