Ali Helnwein — Voyage

Ali Helnwein’s Voyage is what an amusement park adventure ride would entail in a universe in which magic is not limited to parlour tricks or the realm of fantasy. The scenery is aural and yet the experience is almost cinematic – something one can see as well as hear. 

At first the cassette is almost exceeding odd; odd enough to make you understand you are facing the unfamiliar, something that years of listening to the pace, rhythm and aesthetics of more conventional music have ill equipped you to anticipate. The influences are manifold: a consuming passion for everything Baroque, a flavour of science fiction and 1980’s 8-Bit chiptunes and a thousand other ingredients all combined in a drive for pure creation and experimentation. The influences flower and wilt without warning, embracing a Zen like sense of transience as different types of sounds crop up and recede or meld into something new. 

Pop the tape in your tape-deck, sit down and really listen. It will be hard to keep the images from flooding your mind. Let it take hold and enjoy the journey. 


All instruments used on Voyage are listed below.

8 bit synth 
Acoustic guitar 
Banjo 
Bowed piano 
Cello 
Clarinet 
Electric guitar
Filing cabinet 

Flute 
Glockenspiel 
Harp 
Harpsichord 
Maracas 
Oil drum 
Saxophone
Synth 
Tambourine

Timpani 
Toy piano 
Trumpet 
Ukelele 
Viola 
Violin 
Vocals 
Xylophone


Listen to Ali's interview with Dublab.com as he talks about the making of Voyage.


Reviews

If you’ve ever wondered where all those chamber ensembles spawned in the wake of Rachel’s could have gone if only they had kept evolving, well, wonder no more, for Ali Helnwein has an answer. We’ve covered the composer’s music before, and although he’s primarily known for his film work and a musical collective based in Los Angeles, the pieces he’s made for tape are strikingly unique on their own right. They feel as if emerging from the shadows of a dozen different musics, taking shape before our eyes mere moments before dissipating under scrutiny. Voyage is no straightforward travel: the ecstasy of the white-collar man in the cassette cover perhaps hints at the strange inner turn of events that leads him to stand up, all dressed for his 9 to 5 job, and decisively blank out the rest of the office in sheer momentary happiness.
— A Closer Listen

The Drone

Critical Masses

 

Catalog#: SBT019
Release date: 14 April 2015
Edition: 100
Comes with digital download card