knives of spain is 21st-century trobairitz music from North Carolina based auteur Gwen Young, whose sonic terrain spans delicate song craft to opaque experimentation.  Her compositions are informed by diverse musical interests including collaborations in classical, North Indian classical, traditional Middle Eastern, psychedelic rock, Latin jazz and free improvisation.  Since its inception in 2010, knives of spain has been a solo venture; Gwen performs all parts (classical guitar, accordion, Crumar analog synths, flute, broken autoharp, percussion, violin, Max/MSP, field recordings and voice) and presents multi-instrumental live sets in the tradition of electroacoustic performance.  In 2013, she was awarded a grant from the NC Arts Council to support her vision of an unconventional solo singer-songwriter and to help with the creation of her second album Telluric, released on Chicago label Hairy Spider Legs in October of 2016.  As with her first album (2012’s Opening Sequence), Gwen singularly recorded and produced it in her living room in NC.  Telluric has been shared on Tiny Mix Tapes, several podcasts and radio shows, and it reached #3 on Duke University’s WXDU FM in Durham, NC.

 “The diversity throughout (Telluric) is completely amazing. Knives of Spain delivers a specially warped version of pop music, achieved from being baked in a kiln fired by ghostly spirits. "

- Lost in a Sea of Sound:

"Performing under the name knives of spain, Gwen Young’s sophomore EP Telluric is transcendental.  The record utilizes everything from analog synths to flutes to create a captivating, almost mystical sound. Knives’ sound calls forth comparisons to goth-rock goddesses like Kate Bush or Liz Fraser of Cocteau Twins; bestowing these comparisons feels like a rarity, but I am unable to think of someone else more deserving to coexist in this gossamer world."

- Rosie Accola, Hooligan Magazine:

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“Foghorn sounds, deep-breathing accordion, insect hissing, music-box tinklings, and clouds of shivering synth oscillations all contribute to a vibe that can either lull or put you on edge.  Fans of music that braids aspects of folk and the psychedelic avant-garde, minimalism, electronic experimentation and sonic mood painting will find things to like in Knives of Spain.”

- John Adamian, Yes! Weekly: