In the late spring of 2018, Olivia Block and Julia Holter were artists-in-residence in the first Outer Ear Residency at Experimental Sound Studio. The collaboration culminated in a live performance of Whenever the Breeze at the May Chapel in Rosehill Cemetery, Chicago, on June 2nd, 2018.
Julia Holter’s spoken text in Whenever The Breeze was assembled from a combination of a somber love song/poem from thirteenth-century France, En tour tans queen venue bise, and text from a scientific study about bats and global warming. The combination of these fragmented texts, spoken by Julia Holter and processed by Olivia Block, created the beginning and thematic framework for a surreal sound world where spare phrases and words eventually built into a storm of layered voice, wind, breaking glass, bells, and an instrumental ensemble. The ensemble featured Tim Daisy on percussion, Shaun Flynn on clarinet, Jason Stein on bass clarinet, Lesley Swanson on flute, and Adam Vida on organ.