Giacomo Vanelli – ‘Music for Nothing’

Italian musician and composer Giacomo Vanelli crafts a gripping electronic spell on new album Music for Nothing, released via Poland-based label okla records. Modular synthesizers lead a riveting ambient sound that engrosses in both moments of illuminated intrigue and darker foreboding.

Opening the album, “iiiiii (There Is Not Much Space For Hope)” immerses with a tranquil synth pad envelopment. Textural glistening lingers like a sonar effect, as touches of wintry piano adornments add to the spellbinding soundscape. A more bursting character is evident on the subsequent “{{{[[[((()))]]]}}} (Everyone Loves Sirens But These Are Awful)” — where an initially dreamy spaciousness builds into orchestral-like doses of radiance. From the opener’s consistent lushness to the radiant swells here, the tonal momentum on the album is quickly evident.

Conversely, a nocturnal intrigue takes hold on “ii (Bouncing Balls),” where a whisper-y underneath lingering finds gradual accompaniment in prickly, chime-friendly additions. “~ (Whales sing under ice)” even further embraces the album’s second-half traversal into wintry, darker atmosphere — all while still touting a beautiful, glistening quality evident in the bubbly synth components. A whimpering tone adds a chilling edge. “_~_ (The Pond)” concludes the album with masterful effect, serving as a 20-minute epic that ventures from sparseness into illuminated majesty. Music for Nothing is a stirring achievement in audible atmosphere from Giacomo Vanelli.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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