TouMilou Music logo

Kairos Collective | Erato

Michiel van der Meulen’s acclaimed third album is dedicated to the source of music. Music originates from its composer’s mind. But how did it get there in the first place? Why does it come out the way it does? How does one decide that a piece is finished? Why does it sometimes feel like pieces are writing themselves?

> Straight to the liner notes >
(info, music and downloads below)   

Album information

Tracks / total playing time 1:07:27

  1. Crimson / Nihâvend saz semâî
  2. Blackcap / Albanian folk melody
  3. Kilim / Janino
  4. Meltem / Hüseynî karşılama
  5. Erato / Acem-Bûselik medhal
  6. Muhayyer taksîm / Improvisation on the kanun
  7. Sapor / Muhayyer peşrev
  1. Manastırka / Poustséno / Pušteno
  2. Phoenix / Kürdî devr-i hindî
  3. Şivenüma taksîm / Improvisation on the violin
  4. Erebos / Şivenüma peşrev
  5. The Rose and the Nightingale / Phrygian phantasy
  6. Romanza / Acem Aşîrân saz semâî
  7. Aj Sarajevo / Nihâvend yürük semâî / Bojerka


Harris Lambrakisney [1, 2, 7-9, 11-13]
Giorgos Papaioannou – violin [1, 2, 7, 9, 10-13]
Nikos Papaioannou – cello [1, 2, 7, 9, 11-13]
Manolis Kanakakis – kanun [1, 2, 6, 7, 9, 11-13]
Taxiarchis Georgoulis – oud [1, 2, 7, 9, 11-13]
Marijia Katsouna – bendir [1, 2, 7, 11, 13], tombak [12]
Michiel van der Meulentambura [2-4, 8], double bass [14]
Michalis Kouloumis – violin [3, 4, 8]

Alexandros Papadimitrakis – oud [3, 4, 8]
Jacobus Thiele – adufe [3], daire [4], bendir [8], drums [14]

Special guests
Ross Dalytarhu [5]
Kelly Thomalyra [5]
Mayu Shviro – cello [5]
Vagelis Karipis – bendir, rek [9]
Jan Wollring – accordion [14]

Tracks 1, 3-5, 7-9 and 11-14 were composed by Michiel van der Meulen. Track 2 is an arrangement of an Albanian folk melody. Tracks 6 and 10 are improvisations. Track 9 was recorded by Nikos Kollias at Antart Studios (Athens, Greece) on June 22, 2020; 3, 4 and 8 by Udo Pannekeet at Wedgeview Studios (Woerdense Verlaat, Netherlands) on November 21, 2020; 14 in the same studio on July 21, 2021; 5 by Vangelis Apostolou at Studio Vasmaris (Heraklion, Greece) on August 27, 2021; and 1, 2, 7, the finale of 9, and 10-13 by Nikos Kollias at Antart Studios (Athens, Greece) on May 22-24, 2022. A few corrective overdubs were recorded by Cengiz Arslanpay at his home studio (Utrecht, Netherlands) on June 26, 2022, and Nikos Paraoulakis at Studio K65 (Athens, Greece) on July 16, 2022. The album was mixed and mastered by Vangelis Apostolou at Studio Vasmaris between May 26 and November 2, 2022.

Production, artwork and liner notesMichiel van der Meulen

Many thanks are due to: Ross Daly and Labyrinth Musical Workshop for guidance and inspiration • The musicians and studio staff for the great time we spent and the great job they did • Evgenios Voulgaris for inspiring the arrangement of Romanza and his advice on the essence of a big sound • Sergios Voulgaris for advice on devr-i kebîr rhythmic patterns for bendir • Cengiz Arslanpay for explaining metaphors in Ottoman poetry • Pavlos Spyropoulos for lending us his double bass • Remco Busink for modifying our tambura • Sven van der Gijp for extending Kairos Collective to the Netherlands • The Theocharopoulou-Orfanidis and Papaioannou families for hospitality during the Greek recording sessions and friendship in general • My family and inlaws for their generous support of the project • Dominy Clements for proofreading the liner notes • Martine van der Meulen for love and understanding – this album is, as always and more than ever, for you.

TouMilou #6 / EAN 8714835139188
© 2022 M.J. van der Meulen/TouMilou

Reviews and mentions

Music Mosaic concerts / Houdetsi, Crete

Erato concert banner

Erato was presented in Labyrinth Musical Workshop’s Music Mosaic concert series in Houdetsi,  Crete, on August 4, 2023.

Musicians: Christos Barbas (ney), Giorgos Papaioannou (violin), Nikos Papaioannou (cello), Taxiarchis Georgoulis (oud), Michiel van der Meulen (tambura), Pavlos Spyropoulos (bass) and Sergios Voulgaris (kudüm, bendir, daire), with a special guest appearance of Ross Daly (tarhu) and Kelly Thoma (lyra).

Hollandse Nieuwe! / Featured release series

Hollandse Nieuwe

Erato was selected as the second Hollandse Nieuwe! of 2023, that is, featured for a week on NPO Klassiek in the radio programs Passaggio Late Night (weekdays) and Vrije Geluiden (weekend): two tracks per day combined with fragments of an interview (in Dutch).

Get the album

Bandcamp is an online platform that allows you to buy music directly from the people who make it. Unlike other channels, most revenue goes to the makers. Independent artists need independent listeners!

Downloads / Terms of use in the footer

Erato album art (1000 x 1000 px jpg)

Album art / 1000 x 1000 px jpg

Erato, scores (Michiel van der Meulen, 2022)

Scores / pdf

About the artwork
Sir Edward John Poynter (Paris, 20 March 1836 – London, 26 July 1919), was an English painter and draughtsman with a long and distinguished career that earned him a knighthood and an honorary Cambridge degree in 1898, and a baronetcy in 1902. His ‘Erato, Muse of Poetry’ (1870, watercolour on paper, 47 x 33 cm) is more chaste and delicate than the generally voluptuous, exalted, Baroque to Romantic-era depictions. Apart from the fact that she is winged, Poynter’s Erato is a mythologically faithful represention of the muse of love poetry, which I chose because of the beauty of the eyes. 

The artwork of the scores book is from Nederlandsche Vogelen (‘Dutch Birds’) by Cornelis Nozeman and Christiaan Sepp, the monumental, beautifully illustrated, five-part first Dutch avifauna, which appeared between 1770 and 1829.

Other releases by Kairos Collective

Contact us / Neem contact met ons op