‘Stranger’ is the debut solo album from Canadian artist Joanne Pollock. Released via Venetian Snares’ Timesig imprint, with whom Pollock previously collaborated as Poemss, ‘Stranger’ is a stunning collection of electronic pop songs that range from the unsettlingly calm and beautiful through to ferocious explosions of caustic noise, all held together by Joanne’s multi-octave ranging vocals.
“What happens when we push up against that which contains us?” asks Pollock. “By distorting the mirror, we may become plastic. When the comfort of familiarity is stripped away, it can feel as though we become a stranger in our own bodies. Is it through embracing the Stranger that we discover ourselves? Stranger explores the multiplicities of selfhood – what defines us, where the boundaries lie.”
On tracks like the album opener ‘Carnival’, ‘Myself Apart’ and ‘Expect Me’ Pollock’s vocals weave in and out of the bruised and bruising bass lines, glacial synths and stop-start beats almost becoming one with the music, before suddenly overpowering the synthetic elements to take centre stage in bursts of joyful exuberance.
Combining an intricate, detailed approach to music production with illusive almost dreamlike textures ‘Stranger’ sees Pollock further burnish her reputation as one of electronic music’s most exciting and idiosyncratic new artists. Throughout the album’s ten tracks she continually leads us down dark, surprising paths as she experiments with and twists song structures, resulting in an album that feels both eerily familiar and startlingly new and which continues to reveal new secrets with every play.
After a decade’s absence, spent working in commercial sound design, New York based electronic musician and producer, Joseph Fraioli, returns to his Datach’i alias for a brand new album entitled ‘System’. Featuring 16 tracks of beautiful yet unsettling electronic music recorded exclusively on a Eurorack Modular synth, ‘System’ will be released on August 19th via Venetian Snares’ Timesig imprint.
Speaking about the album Fraioli said, “I’ve spent much of the past decade building up my own sound design company, Jafbox Sound, and in recent years have become fascinated by modular synths. I’d been making a series of performance videos, showing how they work and that inspired me to start making music as Datach’i again. I suddenly realized I had a growing collection of tracks that worked together and had something new to say. Aaron heard some of them and encouraged me to start thinking of them in terms of an album and here we are.”
The first non-Vsnares-related release on Timesig, ‘System’ will be available on double vinyl, CD and digital download. “Joseph’s special take on live modular production has had me really excited this past year,” explained Timesig’s Aaron Funk (Venetian Snares). “There were so many great tracks, it was nearly impossible to compile this album. I’m tickled he agreed to release them with Timesig!” Those who pre-order the physical release via the Planet Mu website will also receive a bonus CD featuring 19 more tracks recorded at the same time as ‘System’.
In addition Timesig and Datach’i have partnered with TipTop Audio, the Silicon Valley based technology company whose high tech modules and patented accessories have changed the fundamentals of how musicians now use modular synthesizers. Everyone who pre-orders the album will be entered into a draw to win a TipTop Audio Z3000 Smart VCO oscillator and one of the company’s ‘Happy Ending’ kits, the winner will also receive a one time 20% discount on any other TipTop Audio products ordered direct from the company (some restrictions apply), providing the perfect introduction to building a modular system.
Having released 6 albums between 1999 and 2006 on labels including Planet Mu and Sublight, Fraioli has spent the past ten years running award-winning sound design company, Jafbox Sound, where his productions for film, TV and adverts have been recognized by the likes of the Cannes Film Festival and the CLIO Awards. In 2014, Fraioli also joined forces with Interpol’s Daniel Kessler, forming Big Noble. Their freshman release entitled, ‘First Light’ combined Fraioli’s approach to sound design with Kessler’s guitar work to create cinematic, ambient soundscapes.