CATALOG NUMBER: 12k1056
PRESS RELEASE: PDF
12k presents Australian duo Solo Andata along with their second album, self-titled. Translated literally from the Italian as one way, Solo Andata portrays the theme of a one-way journey that moves from (and represents a thread between) water and land, fluid/stasis, cold/hot. Following Solo Andatas debut album Fyris Swan (Hefty, 2006) and their 12k inception on Live in Melbourne, Solo Andata presents us with an ambient affair, with dark drones coupled with ethereal sonic environments.
It could be said that Solo Andata is carefully sequenced to a narrative structure: beginning on boat in the cold, arctic night of Ablation, and then ending on foot in the hot wilderness of Woods, Flesh, Bone. However, concepts and narratives that seem clear to the artists are often left oblique to the listeners. This is perhaps why Solo Andata represented this narrative in a strict sense by recording what the titles literally refer to. For example, Woods Flesh, Bone presents us with sweltering woodlands, the sound of a fresh carcass being torn apart and the clattering of bones. The same can be said of Hydraulic Fluctuations, Canal Rocks, Ablation and In the Light Storming. These organic sources, then, help tie music and concept together.
Solo Andata utilizes very little, if any, electronic instruments. Acoustic guitar, piano, cello and the natural resonances of organic materials (usually by way of a violin bow, pluck, or home-made contraption) become their main instruments, and as their live shows often attest to, Solo Andata can turn almost any object into an instrument capable of producing beautiful, other-worldly music.
Solo Andata is being released simultaneously with Look For Me Here (12k2014), a limited edition CD-Single that contains the album mix of Look For Me Here as well as remixes from legendary Japanese musician Ryuichi Sakamoto and 12ks visionary Giuseppe Ielasi.
Solo Andata was created between Perth, Western Australia, Melbourne, Victoria and New York City.
Mixed by Taylor Deupree.
Mastered by Giuseppe Ielasi.
02 Hydraulic Fluctuations
03 Canal Rocks
04 Beyond This Window
05 In The Light Storming
06 Look For Me Here
08 Woods Flesh Bone
Having previously cropped up on the label as one of three acts on 12k's Live In Melbourne album, Australian duo Solo Andata release their second album proper (a follow up to 2006's Fyris Swan, on Hefty) with this absorbing set of compositions, all mixed by Taylor Deupree, with mastering duties undertaken by another 12k stalwart, Giuseppe Ielasi. From the first few moments of its sonically rich opener, 'Ablation', this is an ambient album that's full of nuance and character. Surprisingly, there's actually very little in the way of an electronic presence here, and most of the finer details come from organic sources, whether they be acoustic instruments (both traditional and homemade) or a range of location recordings, encompassing such subjects as the dark-drone chug of a boat's engine to the close-up, environmental clatter of a forest. This is a wonderfully well-produced record (as you'd expect from the roster of talents involved), but it goes beyond the expected domain of textural and analytical microsound-type composition, expanding its focus to include Richard Skelton-esque untamed string passages and Chris Watson-influenced nature portraits. Wonderful stuff.
While many artists use the sonic medium as a canvas to paint imaginary journeys conceptually through sound and instrumentation, this Australian duo takes the concept to a more literal point by utilizing recordings of actual events and elements referenced in the track titles in addition to traditional instrumentation. The result is a wonderfully dark, post-rock tinged trip that shows the 12k label is at the cusp of more than just laptop programming and art installation sounds.
The opening "Ablation" uses the actual sounds of ice and wind to create a murky atmosphere that sounds like rattling engines and running water, never clearly identifiable at first, but familiar and organic. Later in the track some untreated cello and piano arise, starkly contrasting the "known" instruments with the "unknown" ambience. "Hydraulic Fluctuations" (based on fluid fluctuations recorded inside a large pump) has some more overt filtered water noises, but also a clattering percussive part that sounds like rocks rattling together, along with some deep, rich stringed instrument tones. The mix is thick and dense, and far from the minimalism one might expect.
"Canal Rocks" features a field recording of wind through a small rocky alcove in Australia, which is contrasted with a gentle, hovering melody. As the track goes on, the lighter moments are supplanted by the deeper, dense textures. "Beyond This Window" opens with shimmering feedback like tones and understated strings that focus more on the musical rather than environmental end of the sound spectrum, though the calming rush of a rainstorm keeps things rooted in nature.
The low end rumbles and echoed reverberations "In The Light Storming" uses obviously resemble a violent storm, the sound creeping into textures that have a vaguely early industrial vibe to them. However, the sound is never oppressively dark or violent, and instead the sun shines through at the end to reveal bits of pure, untouched ambience. "Look For Me Here" (also available as a CD single with remixes by Ryuichi Sakamoto and Giuseppe Ielasi) is the closest thing to being overt "post-rock" with its distant pings and pulses, rattling fuzz and swells of orchestral like tones. Glistening chimes and hammered guitar notes sit above of filtered noise that nicely compliments the more traditionally beautiful moments.
The final two tracks of this journey are much more dark and sinister than the rest. "Loom" is an appropriate title for a piece of humming ominous strings and dark, growling like textures. Cello, guitar and other strings provide a more familiar reference point to the otherwise murky mire, but even they alternate between a melancholy drone and a violent, panicked pace. The long closer, "Woods Flesh Bone," is another literally titled track. Consisting of field recordings that can only be described as "wet," the sound is amplified by flies buzzing all around (based on field recordings of a chicken carcass), and an eerie calm, punctuated by birds far away. The sound of dark isolation grows worse as the synthetic elements become more pronounced as the track winds down, leading to a dark, bleak foreboding sound that is one of the best examples of how to aurally represent decay. Rather than the journey ending happily, it instead finishes on a bleak, sinister note.
Each piece functions on its own as a microcosm of organic sound although all are thematically linked, expertly mixing untouched field recordings, treated sounds, and traditional instrumentation into a work that sounds decidedly natural, yet completely mysterious. It is the kind of album that begs to be replayed not just because of its inherent strength, but also because of its variation and complexity.
DARK ENTRIES (BE)
Hoewel Solo Andata (n weg) een redelijk onbekende naam is, zijn ze met dit album al aan hun tweede toe. Dit project van Paul Fiocco en Kane Ikin is echt wel een vreemde eend in de bijt van het experimentle wereldje. Ze vertrekken veelal van zeer uiteenlopende veldopnames, die gaandeweg aangevuld worden met andere organische klanken van cello, piano en allerhande speciale akoestische effecten. Ze gebruiken een minimum aan elektronika en trappen hierdoor niet in de val van de elektronische rijstebrij waar al verscheidene artiesten reeds hun geloofwaardigheid aan verloren zijn. Vaak verraadt de titel van een nummer iets over het gebruikte materiaal of roep deze een concreet beeld op, maar men laat meer dan voldoende over aan de verbeelding van de luisteraar. Ik kan met gemak zeggen dat dit een van de beste albums is die dit jaar in zijn genre uitgegeven zijn. 9/10
Si Solo Andata utilisait en majorit des instruments lectroniques, on pourrait aisment voir dans le troisime album du duo australien une nouvelle rfrence d'electronica sensible et raffine. Mais, et c'est encore plus impressionnant, c'est de maniere presque totalement acoustique que travaille Solo Andata, a grande renfort de field recordings, de guitares, pianos, violoncelle, mais aussi rocs ou ossements. Une musique primitive, donc, tribale, meme, au service de paysages dessins de fco pointilliste, ou les teintes sombres, omniprsentes, sous la forme de drones, mais aussi d'ossements machs, de vents nocturnes, n'occupent jamais tout le spectre, car la-haut, dans la canope, le soleil commence a percer, n'attendant que son heure pour frapper le sol. Et c'est la, dans l'attente de cette lumire, dans la patiente observation d'un environnement qui se rchauffe peu a peu (on part des glaces d'"Abrasion" jusqu'aux bruits de foret de "Woods Flesh Bone"), que nous installe Solo Andata, avec un talent rare pour faire de chaque moment une dcouverte et de chaque lment un motif signifiant. - Jean-Francois Micard.
FLUID RADIO (UK)
I must confess that when asked to review a 12k release I was already half way to loving it before I even started listening.
The label never puts a foot wrong to my ears and I was a fan early on, and loved how the label evolved and was so inventive. With that in mind I dived into the album on headphones late one night as you do
The album starts with a magical interweaving of cello and violin instrumentation and is underpinned by an invocative landscape of beautifully celestial harmonies and field recordings/samples, all with a slight contemporary feel. This isnt celestial in the newage sense but in the nu-age sense if that makes sense. Angelic vocals are underpinned by an almost motor like chugging cycle which subtley ebb and flow through the soundfield leaving the whole album charged with a really nice depth of feeling and filmic like quality. Its a very comfortable listen that leaves you wanting to stay for more, the type of music you can listen to on cycle for days.
The album at times shifts into huge vistas of cross filtered and convoluted soundscapes with a deeper more immersive quality. These merge with the sounds of the seashore and a subtle, beautiful harmonic dissonance that gently meet the spirit of air, and again its a wonderful place your transported to.
All in all its everything I love about contemporary ambient music. It has soul, and a perfect balance of emotional chromatic content and slight abstraction. Magical music and a work of beauty and harmony. Review by Matt Hillier
HEADPHONE COMMUTE (US)
Quietly chirping electronic engines are silenced by waves of bowed cello. The sound of rippling water drowned in drones of strings seeps through the title of Hydraulic Fluctuations. This is the dream world of Solo Andata - an Australian duo comprised of Paul Fiocco and Kane Ikin. Having previously released their debut, Fyris Swan (Hefty, 2006), the duo got picked up by 12k, and contributed a recording to Live In Melbourne (12k, 2008), appearing among tracks by Seaworthy, and label owner, Taylor Deupree. Solo Andata is their highly anticipated release for the New York minimal and ambient label, along with a mini booklet of 8-piece photography by Deupree himself, and precise mastering touch of Giuseppe Ielasi.
This is a warm album, covering you with a blanket of organic materials, natural field recordings, and swells of ambient soundscapes. The restraint and delicate touch within this production stops time, thought, and all of the pain. Solo Andata is the sensual reflexology for the mind. The track titles enhance the experience, hinting at captured moments like In The Light Storming and Canal Rocks, the latter featuring a recording of wind within a small alcove in Australia. The meditative nature of these pieces focuses the inner ear on within, while the outer contemplates without.
At the epicenter lies the focus of the album, Look For Me Here. This is the place that you reach after descending through the laid out paths of an early morning forest, quiet nights, and misty caves. This beautiful track is also available from the label as a single, with a remix by the above mentioned Giuseppe Ielasi and Ryuichi Sakamoto. Make sure to grab that one. And by the time Loom comes out with a crying cello by Louise McKay, you're truly in love. Fans of Hildur Gu nadttir will melt within.
Highly recommended for all wonders of 12k, above mentioned artists, plus Richard Skelton, Lawrence English, and Christopher Bissonnette. Bravo, 12k. Well done! This is a great catch, hold onto this one. I'm more than eager to follow the group along its intricately formed path, even if their way is only one way, the solo andata.
Vige autenticit del materiale in questo secondo album del duo australiano Solo Andata in uscita per la 12k, mixato dallo stresso Taylor Deupree e masterizzato da Giuseppe Ielasi.
Una scelta questa che accompagna tutta la durata del disco, che lascia coesistere simultaneamente natura (fiele recordings che catturano risonanze di ghiaccio, acqua o vento) ed artificio (quello creato dallo strumento, pochi per la verit qualche tratto di chitarra acustica, pianoforte, violoncello).
Il tutto, per assiomi e ragionamenti deduttivi perseguito con un unico intento l'armonia, narrata nel continuo fluido di architetture orizzontali, prive di goemeterie prestabile, addomesticate si ma non lasciate allo stato selvaggio.
Paul Fiocco e Kane Iin hanno bisogno delle miniature e in questo che acquista qualit figurativa l'arete sonora di Solo Andata nessuna severa scelta di dettagli in micro-droni ma caldi e graduali inni, vicini a un certo stile alla Lawrence English.
Dichiaratamente ambient questo esordio con la 12k si troval a suo agio prima nell'isolazionista e introversa "Ablation" poi, in una morsa di microsuoni in gorghi (Hydraulic Fluctuations), si lascia sprofondare, increspare (In The Light Storming) o incantare da mondi acustici (Look For Me Here) o negli intensi bagliori in loop che evocano l'origine e le polverio d'archivio alla William Basinski ("Canal Rocks").
Facile associare elementi di astrazione e libera a queste otto tracce, difficile trovarvi qualcosa fuori posto ed alla fine dei conti necessario ricorrervi per dissetare sogni.
THE SILENT BALLET (.COM)
Solo Andata is Italian for one way. Apparently, this is a pertinent fact, otherwise you wouldnt be seeing it on every possible press release or critical writing piece that divulges the skinny on this humble but curious Australian duo. Living on opposite ends of the country, Perth-based Paul Fiocco and Melbourne-based Kane Ikin have spent the greater period of 2007 through 2009 gathering the sonic remnants that now find themselves refined, assembled, and packaged as Solo Andata, their second LP. Three years after releasing their debut, Fyris Swan, through Chicagos Hefty Records, Fiocco and Ikin now quietly transition to the deadening minimalist 12k familya transition that makes itself felt on the substance of this self-titled record.
While still bearing similar subdued sensibilities in the execution of their pieces from Fyris Swan, Solo Andata exhibits a more sullen and heartbroken side. The duo experiment with lengthier breaks of organic minimalist textural composition, shedding flagrant indicators of form and only sparingly utilising instrumental timbre. The result sees the duo capably revelling in the paradigm of field-recorded sound artistry that has hints of Tim Hecker, Christopher Willits, and 12k labelmate Steinbruchel.
Working in lengthy brackets of around seven minutes apiece and venturing ambitiously to thirteen minutes on the closer, Fiocco and Ikin manipulate and float their processed samples with enough warmth and artistic intrigue to give the individual pieces the sustenance needed to last their relatively lengthy life-spans. Seamlessly caressing one layer on another, the patience gives the atmosphere licence to gradually absorb every last bit of glowing resonance. Ablation combines a soft, motorised chant that calls out to a delicate melancholic string lullaby for aid, while Beyond this Window melts in distortion and dissolves every last sonic molecule into static with an almost Badalamenti-stylised melodic eeriness. In the Light Storming moulds sinusoidal echoes, tones and brief spurts of simulated tinnitus to radiate a comforting, emotional sense of being.
The diluted instrumental presence never disrupts the main textural work of a droning wash of white-noise-driven atmospherics, so much as placates it. Loom is perhaps the one exception, featuring an acoustic guitar/string duet in what is easily the most forefronted role for any instruments on the album. The instrumental intervention is subtle, such as on Look for Me Here where it paints the space with a gentle harmonic whisper that is embellished by the notes of a guitar, cusped together with the whirring of a sawing motor in a dance so slow that it still ultimately renders the piece formless.
Woods Bones Flesh is a dark, foreboding exit to the record, finding a culmination for the thematic disorientation and solitude that dominates the record. Through a subtle yet meticulous orchestration of field recordings against a backdrop of eerie drone, Fiocco and Ikin almost completely reconcile their stylistic inclinations with the ambitions of their new home in 12k. Without fail, Solo Andata achieves on this record what any great ambient album should: the ability to be completely incandescent. And even as it freely self-sustains a glow and warmth, it is also manages to be, in an ever so understated fashion, devastatingly cinematic. -Mac Nguyen
Its fair to say that Ive been eagerly awaiting this album in a pretty large way. Although I havent heard a lot of Solo Andatas music the track that appeared on the Live In Melbourne 12k release was fantastic and I hoped Id hear more. Well, heres the full length release from this duo and I have to say its astonishingly beautiful in every way.
From the cello laced opening track with its incredibly detailed, yet completely flowing sound right through some of the most downright gorgeous textured works and on into some absolutely charming guitar-led moments this is an album that screams quality and depth at every turn. Theres a gently introspective feel that pervades this work its sad and melancholy but has twists and turns that take it into more robust territory every now and again with tense guitar drones and fuzzed out layers, but they manage to feel restrained and never overwhelm you. Sound design is frankly stunning and there are some wonderfully dislocatory elements that work in the background in a seemingly huge stereo field.
Ultimately this is an album that I dont want to break down too much as its the combination of everything coming together into a musical journey that makes it so very special. I could talk about each individual track but I strongly believe that it would do it an injustice. What you need to know is that altogether its melodic, dense, refined, beautiful, powerful, organic really, everything I could want and hope for from a contemporary electronic work.
Its stunning from beginning to end and yet another massive recommendation. Dont miss out on this one.
Solo Andata's (Australian duo Paul Fiocco and Kane Ikin) eponymous follow-up to its 2006 debut album Fyris Swan (Hefty) hews to a somewhat oblique narrative path suggested by its eight track titles. In keeping with the group's name (which, translated from the Italian, means one way), the album traces a uni-directional movement from water to land and exploits binaries such as cold-hot and motion-stasis. The quasi-narrative grounds the album, then, but in a fairly open-ended manner that allows the listener to disregard the story if he/she chooses and attend to the slow-motion drift of the settings all by themselves (exquisitely designed, the release is complemented by a mini-booklet containing eight photographs by Taylor Deupree that visually reference the album tracks).
The opener Ablation supposedly situates itself on a boat in a cold arctic night, and as proof one can hear the distant sounds of seagull cries and the omnipresent churn of the boat's engine. The piece turns into something truly remarkable, however, once the mournful tones of Louise McKay's cello appear to augment the choral singing and the occasional piano accent. Ablation ultimately registers as a veritable master class in sound design and arrangement, with Solo Andata weaving its carefully-selected sounds into an eleven-minute mood piece of strikingly evocative character. With its humanizing presence and emotive warmth, McKay's cello playing also elevates Loom, which tends towards a conventional musical form in its melancholy unfolding and emphasis on acoustic instrumentation (cello, acoustic guitar). The elegiac Canal Rocks presents what sounds like muffled French horn motifs caught in a cascading loop amidst amplified river flow. Beyond This Window finds light breaking on the horizon, drenching the sky in a golden hue, while waves beat against the tower's walls. Piercing the watery flow, pinging bell tones give Look For Me Here a gamelan quality while the pluck and strum of an acoustic guitar adds a natural character to the setting. With the sounds of insects buzzing (presumably about a fresh carcass), birds chirping, and ground crackling underfoot front and center, Woods Flesh Bone makes imagining oneself traipsing through the woods on a sweltering hot summer afternoon the easiest thing in the world.
No information is given regarding sound sources or instrumentation used in producing the materialSolo Andata presumably wanting the music to speak for itselfbut we're told that the duo largely eschews electronic instruments for the sound-generating potential of acoustic instruments (guitar, piano, and cello, obviously); it should be said, however, that while nothing so anomalous as a synthesizer squeal is present, Solo Andata radically processes its source materials until they turn into sumptuously-textured set-pieces. Regardless of production methods or sound sources deployed, the album offers a remarkable exemplar of the soundscaping genre.
VITAL WEEKLY (NL)
Does anyone reminder the series 'Heavenly Voices', compilations by Germany's Hyperium? Mid to late 90s, this series had a whole bunch of humming and chanting female voices, set in electronic and gothic music. Half way through 'Ablation', the opening piece on Solo Andata's third album 'Solo Andata' (which means 'one way' in Italian), there is all of a sudden such a humming choir of voices. Or perhaps a digital keyboard? I am now sure, but the press text talks about the almost absence use of electronics and the use of acoustic guitar, piano, cello and 'natural resonances of organic materials'. I can see the two members of Solo Andata, Paul Fiocco and Kane Ikin, humming in a tunnel, picking up the resonances of the voices and placing this back into the music they create at home. Its absolutely great that 12K notes this thing about all of this being acoustic, because I could have easily believed something else: computers, electronics, field recordings and such like. Its quite nice to hear this all acoustic music that sounds (almost) all electronic. This one shows that it is possible to change the station when it comes to microsound. Perhaps the outcome is close to other music (that thing about heavenly voices was merely a side remark to get the review started; it has nothing to do with that kind of music), modern classic music perhaps, chamber music or ambient, and thus builds on a tradition, deepens that tradition further. Rich textured music. Great stuff. (FdW)
Its tough to top this albums closing horrorshow. For the 10 minutes of Woods Flesh Bone, the Australian ambient duo known as Solo Andata recorded a stroll through a forest where ominous guitar drones and queasy, gurgling liquid noises cut through the wilderness. The rest of the album is bathed in otherwise placid dronescapes crafted from acoustic and homemade instruments. The immaculate Canal Rocks is a murmur of drifting tones that pass through fog-lathered static, while Beyond This Window continues the sleepwalk amid glistening keyboard chords and crashing wave noises. All is well, until Woods Flesh Bone jumps out of the bushes and spoils everything. Nice set-up.