Exposé Online banner

Alio Die / Sylvi Alli — Amidst the Circling Spires
(Projekt 292, 2014, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2014-01-08

Amidst the Circling Spires Cover art

Alio Die is the artistic nom-de-plume of Italian ambient dronescape composer Stefano Musso, releasing over two dozen releases either on his own or in collaboration with others since the early 90s. His is a name one can rely on for top shelf floating ambient music; his 2003 collaboration Expanding Horizons with Matthias Grassow is a case in point: pure magic, a 2LP set that continues to fascinate and enthrall me no matter how many times I listen to it. The other five-or-so releases I’ve heard carry a similar spellbinding quality. For Amidst the Circling Spires, he has teamed up with Berkeley, California based vocalist Sylvi Alli for what is at once a dark, mysterious and emotional journey through electro-ambient space, with gentle shimmering touches of gothic and medieval worlds. Alio Die for his part provides the sounding board based on loops of bells, gongs, percussion, zither, kalimba, and found sounds, all heavily layered and treated, creating the perfect studio textures over which Alli’s voice can float freely. Additional guests provide zither, e-bow, electronics and effects, track depending. There are seven long tracks in all, the approach of each is similar, only the instrumentation and voice trajectories change, with seemingly real-time improvisations creating trance-like atmospheres that a listener can easily get lost within. This is one of those discs you’ll want to set on endless repeat and listen to over and over until the first light of day arrives.

Filed under: New releases, 2014 releases

Related artist(s): Sylvi Alli, Alio Die (Stefano Musso)

Latest news

Seaprog 2018 Artist Announcements Raise Festival's Profile – Seattle's Seaprog festival has been going since 2013, and the 2018 edition features a slate of artists that's sure to bring more attention to the event. Cheer-Accident, Bubblemath, and Free Salamander Exhibit are in the first round announcement of performers. In keeping with their tradition of focusing on regional artists, they will also present a number of artists from Washington, Oregon, and British Columbia. [Edit: Just added: Inner Ear Brigade] » Read more

Adelbert von Deyen RIP – Word reaches us that German electronic musician Adelbert von Deyen has died. His recorded legacy reaches back to 1978, when Sky Records released Sternzeit. Von Deyen, who was born October 25, 1953 in Süderbrarup, was also known as a painter and graphic artist. » Read more

Didier Lockwood RIP – Word reaches us today of the death of one of France's great jazz musicians, violinist Didier Lockwood. His playing bridged many worlds, from traditional jazz to fusion to progressive rock, and his talent can be heard on recordings by Magma, Clearlight, Pierre Moerlen's Gong, and many more. Lockwood was 62. » Read more

10 Years of Fruits de Mer - The Incomplete Angler – Those of you who are faithful followers of Exposé will know that we have been promoting Fruits de Mer and its side labels and releases from nearly its first year. Now music journalist and author Dave Thompson has written a book chronicling the past ten years as a celebration of this milestone. » Read more

Tom Rapp RIP – Singer / songwriter Tom Rapp, best known with the band Pearls Before Swine, passed away on February 12, at the age of 70, after a battle with cancer. » Read more

Previously in Exposé...

Elka Atanasova - Winds of the Rhodopes – Back in the early nineties, when the Bulgarian Women's Choir was making the rounds, a diminutive but fire-breathing 19-year-old violinist from the same country released this promising debut work. How...  (1999) » Read more

Listen & discover

Print issues