(Galaverna 2013)

Review by Cheryl Tipp 

A clue to the contents of Andreas Bick’s recent release on Galaverna can be found in the title ‘Eolo’, the Italian name for Aeolus, the ruler of the winds in Greek mythology. The work consists of two parts; an audio only piece and a video work. Both draw inspiration and indeed content from the trade winds that pass over the volcanic island of La Palma, situated in the Canary Islands archipelago, which Bick visited towards the end of 2010.

The audio only element of ‘Eolo’ combines field recordings with the haunting vocals of German singer Almut Kühne. While the voice of Kühne remains a fairly constant aspect of the four and a half minute composition, the presence of wind is more transient, with recordings almost naturally moving in and out of the piece. This similarity to the changeable nature of wind can only be deliberate and is a thoughtful touch.

The accompanying video takes this composition and applies it to footage gathered by Bick over a two week period in the autumn of 2010. While the audio only version is pleasant to listen to, it is by no means exceptional. In my opinion the work really shines when the two elements of sound and moving image come together. ‘Eolo’ as an audiovisual work is strikingly beautiful; the time-lapse recordings have been edited to create a highly attractive short film that seems almost surreal at times. It is with this coming together of the visual and the acoustic that the spirit of Eolo is truly invoked.

With just over a year and five releases under their belt, Galaverna is in a perfect position to experiment, diversify and not be tied down to a particular style. It will be interesting to see what road this exciting label decides to take.


[Andreas Bick]

Andreas Bick website
Galaverna website

Cheryl Tipp

Wildlife sounds curator at British Library.