Rise and Shrines! Bed-Stuy musician mixes Irish folk and electronic music

Wall of sound: Shrines will perform at National Sawdust on Feb. 19.
Photo courtesy of Shrines

Oh Danny Boy, the bleeps and bloops are calling!

A Bedford-Stuyvesant musician will add electronic beats to the traditional ballads of the Emerald Isle, at a Williamsburg concert next week. Shrines — the solo project of singer Carrie Erving — said that the show at National Sawdust on Feb. 19 will showcase tunes from her debut album “Release,” which uses synthesizers, cellos, and electronic drums to accompany her powerful voice. 

“I think it’s going to be a really great night for folks, with music that is combining the influence of traditional folk music with modern music, with electronic beats, with synths,” said Erving. 

Her debut release was heavily inspired by Sean-nos, she said, a traditional Irish style of a capella singing. The self-written album mixes that style with influences from more modern vocalists such as Bjork, she said.

“It is sort of following those influences, but also thinking about music that I like to listen to that is emotionally powerful and draws you in,” Erving said. 

The artist will also offer a sneak peek at songs from her next album, which she describes as “my version of traditional Irish songs,” that she plans to release sometime in the fall. 

Erving, who is of Irish descent, was first drawn to traditional Irish music while on a trip to the land of her ancestors. She was impressed by the storytelling in those songs, which often describe the experience of love, of immigration, and of everyday personal life — topics which are still relatable, she said, even though the songs may be centuries old. 

“I also feel like they’re hauntingly beautiful songs that have been passed down through the years that help me feel connected to earlier generations and to a spiritual realm,” Erving said. “There’s also a lot of songs about connecting to the natural world that I find really beautiful.”

During the show, Erving will sing and play the synthesizer, and will be joined by an electronic drummer, a cellist, and a team of dancers from the group CreateArt. Adding dancers is a new experiment, she said, but one that felt right for National Sawdust’s innovative stage. 

“It’s really exciting for me to be in the National Sawdust space. I feel like they encourage experimentation and I feel like it is a chance for me to add some visual elements that bring a new aspect to the work,” she said. 

Shrines at National Sawdust (80 N. Sixth St. at Kent Avenue in Williamsburg, www.nationalsawdust.org). Feb. 19 at 8 pm. $18.