Shanyio came a long way from experimental artist to prolific avant-garde composer/multiinstrumentalist. Perhaps this Romanian artist seem like a prolific musician who releases his recordings on a nearly monthly basis, but Shanyio calculates and simultaneously works on several projects at the time. Therefore, it may appear like his albums and collaborations are popping from every possible direction, but quite the contrary, his works are taking a lot more time in the making than you might think. It’s due to his distinctive approach to experimental music. Shanyio is known as an artist who thoroughly plans his compositions and publishes them only when he’s entirely satisfied with the result.
It’s also the case with one of his latest releases, named Of The Water / A Apelor. This material came out on a vinyl record and cassette, but the cassette is already gone. Of The Water / A Apelor includes three compositions, two shorter on the first side and the longevous one on the other side. Like in his previous works, Shanyio gathers an impressive list of guest appearances by remarkable musicians, such as Călin Torsan (alto and soprano saxophone), Thomas Almádi (percussions), Claire Deak( vocals and drone organ), street musician (flute), Miraela (reciting) and Dan Zibarov (vocals). Therefore, Shanyio is mainly responsible for the remaining portion of the instruments like ceramic/metal bowls, dulcimer, cymbalom, distorted zither, cello, flute, shakuhachi, percussion, field recordings, and electronics. This comprehensive collection of various instruments unquestionably resonates in a special manner throughout the entire material, which you can also expect from any previous recording by this tremendous Romanian avant-garde artist.
Shanyio explores several complementary genres to achieve the desired sound. You’ll notice elements of ambient, drone, musique concrete, and field recordings, operating harmoniously during the entire material. Of The Water / A Apelor undoubtfully holds some terrific eerie atmosphere, mainly because of the presence of various movements, recognizable melodies, and other implementations. This material would work flawlessly as a contemporary horror movie soundtrack because of the characteristic background movements that give the chills to the listener. However, this recording also contains a calmy ambiance that encapsulates some organic ambient, free jazz and jazz aesthetics. Nevertheless, these maneuvers are thoroughly planned to perfection, so you’ll enjoy them equally as the eerie side of the material. The water flowing, rain dropping, and other sounds related to water are continuously present, so Shanyio dedicated the majority of his new album to this significant ingredient of every living creature.
These compositions sound like a charm on the cassette format, but I would undoubtfully love to hear how these compositions are resonating on the vinyl record. For some weird reason, I think these numbers articulate a lot better on this specific sound carrier, so if you’re considering a purchase, pick up vinyl release for sure. The cassette release is long gone, but the vinyl is still available on Shanyio’s Bandcamp page. Check it out if you’re into perfectly executed experimental music.