Kristeen Young – Bio
A composer/performer of tempestuous spirit, Kristeen Young caresses and coerces
an orchestra’s worth of sounds from her piano while the barbaric beauty of
her melodies underscore lyrics drawn directly from the subconscious.
Like a musical Van Gogh, the psychosweeping range of her voice transforms
screamed apologies into whispered threats. With tones both tense and tender
sung through clenched teeth and ivory keys punk-pounded with clenched fist,
the startling structure and subversive harmonic content of her works betray a
keen compositional sense, sharpened by her studies at Webster University and
graduate work at UCSB, where she wrote and performed opera.
Enduring a childhood which never existed to begin with but lasted far too long,
Kristeen snuck listens of parentally forbidden Prince while spending most of
her formative years singing in church. Recording work with a collegiac
colleague led to the formation of Nov. 9th, her first band, in 1992.
The frenetic energy of Nov. 9th gave way to the dark, seething elegance of
WaterWorks, formed late in 1993. After a stint of soul-searching solo
performance, Kristeen combined the expressive ranges of her previous groups
in a new creation which left the guitar behind, allowing – and requiring – the
piano to rise to dominance. Her current duo is complete with the voodoo
rhythmic stew of drummer Jeff White.
To avoid reiterating the obvious comparisons with the few other piano-playing
sopranos which have broken through the glass ceiling of a pretty-boy dominated
industry, Kristeen has been abstracted as the icy intensity of
Diamanda Galas morphed with the firey power of Jerry Lee Lewis. On stage, her
half-Apache, half-Audrey Hepburn appearance forms the striking apparition of a
tigress prowling the modern musical landscape; this combined
sound and vision has garnered Ms. Young opening slots for diverse acts such as
Television, the Cranes, Echo and the Bunnymen… and Veruca Salt opened for
Kristeen Young and her All-Boy Band:
Kristeen Young – voice, piano
Jeff White – drums