One of the most poetic gems from our experimental scene, ever (…) TIU Pau Cristòful
Oriol Solé (Alado Sincera, Ghandi Rules OK) releases ‘II’, his second studio album. A double LP that despite the austerity of its title, contains nine daring compositions spread across four movements of rare musical awareness. Solé’s leap of faith serves to further explore the musical discourse of ‘Cadells’, his 2014 album.
This time, Sole’s discourse is centered around the probing of sound (a nonmusical element) and its poetical use. The sound source is nature: anything that is organic and liable to decay. Field recordings permeate the album; nonetheless the artist spends long periods of time in rural Ireland, a time well spent trekking and roaming the fields. The pulsing and crackling sound of footsteps against the moist soil is a key rythmical element around which everything harmonic and musical rotates. Footsteps creep up in most compositions to serve the purpose of order: all that’s musical in the album was recorded following the initial sounds of nature. If the organic sounds in this new recording awake Solé’s compositional intuition, it is from this relationship that the melodic discourse emerges, however subtle or abstract it may seem. The artist submits to the primal story line, one told by sound, which is fortuitous and which ultimately determines the album’s personality. The artist’s work is to select and constrain the sound material recorded, emphasizing the sharp edges, angles, and shapes of each recorded moment in time. The work that results from that is haunting—or even disturbing—, and it is onthing more than his particular take on the sluggish growth of beauty. The album is an unsettling, accurate zooming in on the dissection of a gesture or movement.
Experimental and yet highly melodic, the structure of ‘II’ distances itself from the popish songs in ‘Cadells’, giving rise to a harmonic paradox: the initial, referential sounds that accommodate melody dissolve and mix with static, while repeated motifs keep us on tenterhooks. Uncertainty leads the way and guides us through this album, a feeling that is somewhat enhanced by the lyrics. The artist wants to inform us that the surrounding environment may look stable to us, but it is nothing but a frail and temporary state mistaken by order. Indeed, if the things we are able to identify and acknowledge are never permanent — always tending towards decay, uncertainty, redefinition, renewed certainty, and back to the start —, this LP is a celebration of it: an ode to everything that is ephemeral.