Sol Levit

I’m at risk of sounding like an SEO article specialist, but here’s the deal: EUS’ ‘Sol Levit’ is my album of the year and we’re only in October! A full bodied, orchestral sound runs through the piece, which is as far away from a collection of tracks as ice cream is to being sold in the desert. This sense of deserted morals, a pin-pricking of conscience in the press notes as to creating something meaningful, is a glimpse to acting as touching as the music itself.

‘There is so much out there. Hidden secrets. Our community, our society, our planet, are not a closed capsule where everything, and nothing else happens. There is more. We come from dust, and will return to that state, after life. We’ve created our own, fake universe. But in the end, it is meaningless.’ Nomadic ideals and dystopian futures are a strong flavoured stew in experimental music, where most are trying to make a larger noise than the last. B7t on ‘Sol Levit’, there is a rigid maturity at core, where passages fall and rise ridiculously transparent. Strings never flee; Dark Ambient drones never suffocate; the vibe is one of finding an oasis in which to breathe, and deep breaths are order of the day here.

Opener ‘Convenza’ sounds like a tripod camera meeting between Robin Guthrie, Harold Budd and Leyland Kirby. A scything synth ominously hums out a gambit for catching your ears in its grip. This is the benevolent truth of the following 53 minutes: you feel like you’re being torn apart to see what rock lies in your soul’s life, the beating heart that no-one else can rival or alter. Souls live on in life until long after we’re gone, so we’re told. This track to me is the aural equivalent of an impending afterlife, while for Jose Acuna, aka EUS, it’s just one part of his mantra for the LP: ‘It is unnecessary to express a spiritual experience in words. Keep it for yourself.’

There is something of the Berliner Philharmoniker & Sir Simon Rattle about third piece ‘Qualia’, the violins quietly foregrounding a forgotten ghost train station at dawn. Hear them pass through the stops, opening their doors only for no-one to visibly exit. Where are these souls from, what does it all mean? At first you wonder, then you just soak up the refractively assuaged experience. Windows to another dimension; loose ends that need resolving. The pace is set for more intrigue as we venture into the mid section of the work.

‘Al Mismo Lugar’, the second longest tune on the album,  conjures a cloud of sadness like a ray of sunshine oppressed and sent into the Earth’s inner crust.  A heated drone plays with counterpoint of arced strings and wooing sound effects, the programming resonant on so many levels as it progresses to somewhere near the epicness of Clint Mansell. In the ‘Music That Made The Movies’ BBC 4 documentary Mansell spoke of just playing until he found something to latch onto, whereas Vangelis earlier in the program – this track sounding like a brainchild from both producers – almost shelved his best ideas before they were ingrained to wax. The best thing about ‘Sol Levit’ is that it keeps all the best moments of what must have been a monumental recording process and shapes them into transcendentally introspective, spiritual experience that defies words altogether. A truly breathtaking album!

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