findings - 12.7.2019
"findings" is a contemplative yet incessantly rhythmic reflection of the composer's experiences with changing landscapes and the passage of time.
Sebastian Zel’s debut EP shows the composer diverging from previous outputs (leadership of NYC hip-hop collective Tabemono), while also retaining his usual creative focuses. "Construct" uses both traditional and nontraditional percussion instruments to build slowly, transporting listeners through a rhythmic reflection of the artist’s Brooklyn landscape. Fever Dream juxtaposes surreal electronics with highly controlled and active piano playing; using incessant near-repetition and sharp contrast to explore the artist’s experiences with insomnia, anxiety, and fears associated with the passage of time. Zel’s sound world is one of contemplation, guiding listeners through a process that is not focused on a climactic goal but rather the intrigue of perhaps one day getting there.
The EP contains two new pieces that are total masterclasses in restraint and the combination of dramatic textures; and features the always tasteful playing of pianist Georgia Mills and percussionists Nicholas Hall, Nick Gigante and Brandon Kyle Wong of Cisum Percussion. The EP is available across all digital download and streaming platforms, as well as in a limited edition print (with digital download) format featuring the incredible cover artwork, created specifically for the project by Steph Butchko.
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read VONYCO's review of findings here!
"Zel... shares his imagination with us directly, and in Findings gives to us the gift of being able to look into the window of his musical imagination"
"Zel's EP nevertheless feels very modern, a quality stemming from its contemporary array of sounds and juxtaposed elements, reflecting a world very much characterized by a similar variety and often ferocious fragmentation"
"Fever Dream, clearly designed to depict an anxious state of being, nevertheless depicts it in a highly aestheticized way. The piece may present us with a disturbing, frantic version of reality, but it is all the same a beautiful reality, one in which we must stand in awe at how sublime it really is, despite the darkness and the uncertainty within."
Findings is an adventerous EP, showing us a dark, indistinct, frantic world. Over the course of the EP, we find many fascinating and frightening things, but seem to always be conscious of a greater process at work. Within a frantic and unpredictable world, there is a core truth that grounds us in the midst of confusion and uncertainty. Although this world may be wicked and hostile, when we have the opportunity to sit and reflect, to truly reflect in honest peace, we can percieve a unity and beauty within it.
- Forest Muran, VONYCO