- InFine / IF1036 / IF1036LP
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Pedro Soler and Gaspar Claus (a father and son pairing, don’t ya know) recorded Al Viento, their second album together, in Iceland and Spain, with assistance from Valgeir Sigurössen and Matt Elliott. Cello and flamenco guitar dance gracefully around one another for a very atmospheric set. Al Viento is out on InFine.
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This is the recorded audio documentation of an intimate father / son bonding session between daddy Soler and his flamenco guitar, and the slithery slide of Gaspar Claus’ cello. It’s a beautiful moment to capture, but not the first time it’s happened - some of you may remember the last collaboration of Barlande a couple of years back. Apparently Bryce Dessner and Sufjan Stevens were involved in that one. They’re always involved.
In the first track alone, across its 8-minute or so duration, we’re treated to the varied faces of the flamenco style, from free-form romanticism to intense percussive techniques, latching onto rhythms seemingly at will and running with them. It’s near virtuosic, but that’s not the whole story is it? Claus’ cello is possibly even more varied - singing lilting, woody phrases to match the sweeter sequences, occasionally jumping to percussive slapping in line with dad, and even droning out some harmonics which really cut deep. Take the opening part of 3rd track ‘Corazon de Plata’, where a gradually changing note shifts suddenly into smaller, higher tones while Soler’s fingerpicking gushes out bubbly phrases.
The 4-way collab on ‘Silencio Ondulado’, featuring Serge Teyssot-Gay and Matt Elliott is definitely the highlight for me - the dustiest, dirgiest of them all, including some distorted electric guitar and many dark slitherings, all in a minor key. Brilliant stuff.
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- Al Viento by Pedro Soler + Gaspar Claus
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