Solo Andata - Self Titled [12k - 2009]Solo Andata are an Australian duo who have been working together since 2006 and are shortly to release their 3rd album. This though is their second and gets its release on the 12K label who have done a great job of bringing to people’s attention a lot of previously unknown acts.
There’s 8 tracks of what I guess you could describe as dark ambient though it doesn’t quite fit into that category, for me anyway, as there’s far too much acoustic instrumentation.
The album starts with Ablation. A lovely atmospheric piece based around a cello and occasional piano note. This is all underpinned with a low subtle synth drone and synthesised ethereal sounding voices and what sounds like field recordings made in a wood.
It all gets even further subdued after this with the next few tracks being built up over the field recordings (that have the same subject matter as in the first track) and with just a low quiet synth drone that barely changes going over the top. Sounds dull in words but as a piece of atmosphere it actually works quite well.
It all moves back up a gear on the fifth track (In The Light Storming) where the same basic layer is there with what sounds again like neo-classical strings over the top playing very slowly and with more dissonance than melody.
The mood lifts for Look For Me Here an uplifting track based around an acoustic guitar being plucked and with more field recordings that are more indeterminate in origin then the previous ones. It’s almost like being in Boards of Canada territory here if you could imagine them without any beats.
Loom carries on where Look For Me Here left of more plucked guitar strings, some synth in the background adding texture and some violin and cello over the top of it.
The final track Woods Flesh Bone again returns to the field recording of someone walking through woods, over twigs, past water etc with a synth drone over the top. It’s a piece just crying out for a film to be made to go with it really. It’s got atmosphere and tension all over it.
This is a well-crafted release from Solo Andata that works well on repeated visits and certainly make them a promising duo to keep an eye on.David Bourgoin