Nick Bernal, Nevado Music
Creativity relies on vision in a figurative and literal sense.
Though he may be a singer, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, and producer, Kuri chiefly describes himself as “an observer.” His keen insight and sonic curiosity thread together an intriguing framework of carefully constructed and composed alternative on 2019’s debut album No Village [Nevado Music]. The foundation remains rooted in organic performances, classically infused orchestration, jazzy freeform spirit, cinematic ambition, and ultimately inspired observation.
“I like to watch, analyze, and create systems in my brain,” he affirms. “As a solo artist, I enjoy the freedom to express exactly what I want by drawing on what I see.”
Born and raised Scott Currie in the city of Abbotsford, British Columbia, he found himself constantly looking outward. The small Mennonite community he grew up in encouraged “a sense of questioning everything to figure out why we do what we do.” As the youngest of four brothers, mom bought him a drum set to jam with his guitarist siblings. Soon, he transitioned from behind-the-kit to an old piano in the house by the age of twelve.
Scott began writing under the name Kuri in 2017. Galvanized by influences ranging from Robert Glasper and Radiohead to Africa’s Tinariwen and composer John Cage, he arranged an expansive sonic palette informing his signature sound. It’s comprised of an ever-growing arsenal of instruments, including piano, drums, congas, strings, horns, bass, guitar, and more.
“Every instrument has its own language,” he goes on. “I try to hone the language of each one. It helps articulate the overall goal.”
After entering the CBC Searchlight competition, his songs caught the attention of Nevado Music, and Kuri signed to the label during 2018. Now, No Village strains emotionality through his analytical approach.
The first single and title track from the EP “Human Nature” careens from stark acoustic strumming into a luminous string-backed refrain. His soulful croon rises to the forefront as lyrics plaintively ponder “a breakup, a close friend moving away, and six people I saw every day disappearing from my life.”
In the end, his vision leads to a lasting connection.
I hope my music brings healing in some way to listeners,” he leaves off. “I want to be candid and hopefully encourage others to do the same. I hope they feel something.”
“…dazzling as it is bewildering… a lyrically ingenious, musically mystifying cinematic folk masterpiece.” Writes Atwood Magazine on the first single from No Village, titled Sort Sol in a piece titled titled “THE BREATHTAKING GENIUS OF KURI’S AVANT-FOLK MASTERPIECE”.