The mesmerizing alt-folk songs of Amsterdam-based singer-songwriter VanWyck are sometimes sparse and intimate, sometimes darkly overpowering. With her warm, earthy voice, rich lyrics and enchanting melodies, she weaves a tapestry of stories. Stories about everyday struggling women, or mythical ones that roam our history. About a drowning girl, a whispering garbageman, a raging goddess or a lost alcoholic. With every listen, more layers to her songs present themselves.
“I need songwriting to make sense of things, to find words for things, to search the corners of my mind that can’t be reached in other ways. It’s also the thing I enjoy most, this playing with melodies and words, this mysterious twisting and threading. This thing that cannot be pinned down, but is just there somehow, at your fingertips.”
With four albums out to international acclaim and the fifth on the way, VanWyck’s intriguing body of work has drawn comparisons with Leonard Cohen, Natalie Merchant and Laura Marling. But it’s when she’s performing live on stage with her band that a whole new captivating register to her music opens up: “Performing is the sincerest kind of exchange with the audience. It creates a sort of synergy, you’re elevated together.”
In 2015, VanWyck released her first EP, Tanned Legs, which was internationally praised. Her debut album, An Average Woman (2018) came out on her own Maiden Name Records. "After a fragmented upbringing, moving all over the world and playing different roles in different bands, I finally made the album I always felt I had to make. An Average Woman explores the roles we are dealt and the ones we create for ourselves." The record was hailed by the Dutch music press as one of the best releases by a native artist in years.
Her second album Molten Rock (2019) again veers between dark folk, lush Americana and alternative rock. “I wanted to create something that can hold different truths within itself, something that is both vulnerable and strong, that contains happiness and sadness, stillness and abundance. So much of what is thrown at us today is one-dimensional, but in life we’re forever balancing between conflicting notions.”
After her first theater tour was cancelled due to the pandemic, VanWyck changed course and released a third album of intimate, acoustic songs called God is in the Detour (2020). With four new songs written and recorded during lockdown, and four older remastered ones, the album speaks of finding solace in unexpected places. God is in the Detour got a 4 star review in MOJO magazine (which called the album “a beauty”) and has been streamed over a million times.
VanWyck's forth album, The Epic Tale of the Stranded Man (2022) was released with iconic Dutch label Excelsior Recordings. Its twelve songs intertwine both lyrically and harmonically. Together they tell a story about a man haunted by a dark past and a woman who tries to save him. The album received another 4 star review from MOJO magazine and led to performances all over Europe and a theater tour in The Netherlands in 2023.
VanWyck is currently working on her fifth album, to be released in the fall of 2024.
Chris Douridas, KCRW
"troostrijke, sensuele en aangrijpende schoonheid ★★★★"
Menno Pot - Volkskrant
“I’m slowly creating my own realm”
Sophia Deboick - The New European
"Zeker voor wie haar nooit eerder zag, is Christine Oele (artiestennaam VanWyck) de absolute revelatie van deze editie"
Mike Peek, Parool