Montréal-based musician and producer Desert Bloom (Rachel Nam) makes intricate and ethereal synth-based tracks that draw on her twin passions of classical piano and electronic music. Originally from BC, Nam moved to Montréal to pursue a degree in biology, in turn inspiring her moniker. Akin to those wildflowers blooming in the desert, her first solo album, EP1, expands on the subject of resilience. Her second release, DB, features rapid-fire percussive elements fused with intricate rhythms, adding a layer of urgency to her compositions. Having played at MUTEK for the first time in 2019, she offered a striking live performance in 2020 alongside Austin Tufts.
In 2021, Desert Bloom was accompanied by drummer Austin Tufts, best known as part of Montréal art rock band Braids. Tufts is an accomplished drummer who began playing music at a young age. His work has included songwriting, music production, and mixing. Braids currently manage the Toute Garnie recording studio in Montréal's Mile End.
On the tendencies of trauma & resilience
Long-form arrangement from composer Desert Bloom consisting of three movements, on the tendencies of trauma and resilience blends classical form and experimental electronic instrumentation alongside drummer Austin Tufts’ live drum improvisations. Conceptually, this piece delves into reactions to traumas experienced by women of color, the lack of a societal discourse on the subject and the concept of resilience, widely used as a scapegoat to avoid providing further support or to genuinely confront our own biases and toxic behaviors.
AMPLIFY D.A.I is an initiative of the British Council in partnership with MUTEK Montréal, MUTEK Buenos Aires, Artlab in Argentina, Oi Futuro in Brazil and Somerset House Studios in the UK. The programme is supported by Canada Council for the Arts, Instituto Nacional de la Música and Fundación Williams.
Moon Boy Records
Rachel Nam also plays bass in Montréal plushcore synth-pop band MagicPerm.