Maneuvering between grandiose retro motifs and a surprising sincerity, Michelle Gurevich’s songs are tragicomic, melody-driven, sentimental and suspended in shadowy glamour. She combines humour with dark realism in smoky and intimate ballads delivered with cutting and fatalistic lyrics.
Her story began when her bedroom-produced debut album Party Girl, by some fateful unknown hand was delivered to the land of her forefathers, and soon made its way blaring from the yachts of Russian billionaires and as the ringtones of mothers all over the Ukraine. The daughter of a Kirov ballerina and an engineer from Leningrad, Michelle grew up listening to her parents’ collection of Soviet and 70’s European records.
Despite the maturity that comes with releasing a 6th album, Ecstasy in the Shadow of Ecstasy finds new opportunities for rawness and vulnerability in a collection of songs about desire without end. The recurring themes are elation sought and remembered, the art and taste for living, romantic friends until the end, the impermanence of home, and roads not taken. Decadent, dramatic and earnest, vintage keyboards and synth strings offer the solitary rendition of a grand experience, and a voice always upfront delivers motifs familiar yet impossible to pinpoint from the great soup of European chanson.
With shows regularly selling out in cities like Istanbul, Berlin, Warsaw and Athens, Michelle has established a niche that includes the East European diaspora, the Berlin queer scene, and those with a taste for the melodramatic balladry of Charles Aznavour, Zeki Müren and Nikolai Slichenko. While her concerts include more live aspects and a line-up of musicians, she continues to produce music in her bedroom, maintaining an intimacy and singleness of expression – from her bedroom to yours. A genre based partly on elements of melody and style, but moreso, a signature fatalist-celebratory approach to songwriting.