Fratto9 Under the Sky Records

An Italian independent label born out of love and passion for underground music and improvisation.

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3 responses to “I/O | Polytone”

  1. Nick Southgate, THE WIRE

    Second album of “minimalistic rhythmic improvisation” from this Italian quartet. The results are reminiscent of Can, and it’s no surprise that I/O have been one of Damo Suzuki’s pick-up collaborators on his neverending world tour. On these recordings, Andrea Reali’s vocals are guttural, mysterious and pre-linguistic, while Luca Mauri’s guitar is cruel, angular and severe. The first track has wah-slash guitar and muttered, drawling vocals, while things get sluggish and sinister on the third track with binary notes alternating like pistons on a steam press. The concluding track sounds like feral cats fighting while the empties are turned out in a dark alley.

    THE WIRE magazine (U.K) by Nick Southgate

  2. Eugenio Maggi, Chain DLK

    Sophomore full-length for the Italian quartet formed by Luca Mauri (guitar), Paolo Romano (double bass), Paolo Benzoni (drums) and Andrea Reali (voice and electronics), recorded in December 2005 and mastered by renowned soundmaker Giuseppe Ielasi. As expected, I/O have maintained their minimalistic formula, both in the layout (this time it’s mostly white) and in their sound, self-defined “minimalistic rhythmic improvisation”. However, my impression is that this work is slightly more focused, “rockish” and “regular” than their debut, but I admit I haven’t gone back to their self-titled cd lately. The semi-structured, controlled improvisation of the quartet still mashes shards of funk, jazz, art rock and vocal experimentation (Reali’s voice must be counted as an instrument per se), sometimes sounding like a curious bridge between ’70’s and today’s avant music. The lesson of Starfuckers (“Infinitive Session”-era)/Sinistri is still the best possible comparison, if coupled with more retro-sounding jazz rock (Universal Congress Of?). Tracks that have made yours truly shiver: n. 6, with funky lines and a double bass line running in circles; and n. 8, with its desertic guitar lines and tribal drumming. Still, I don’t think that this work can come close to the pleasure of seeing them live, where their creative energy is truly released, but that’s the deal with improvisation-based material. Should they manage to really let loose the beast, they would become a HUGE band.

    CHAIN D.L.K. web-magazine by Eugenio Maggi

  3. KOMAKINO

    I/O, from milan, italy, release this new album after two years since Their debut: ‘No overdubs, no prepared samples’ – clearly written on CD spartan notes, – all eight tracks been recorded live in studio, – as stated, – unique way to reproduce Band’s feeling and attitude. I trust that, because the whole album production looks excellent, sounds are bright, smooth and strong. – I/O are masters of free improvvisation, without being random, They scarf syncopated and epileptical, through elegant jazz double-bass lines, funky guitar cuts, accurate professional drumming, analogic loops, and, last but not least, a tracking shot of vocalizes better meant as boiled foam, saliva, tantric vocal chords wisely stretched as playing an instrument. – Avant-gardism, art-nowave, – call it as You wish, – btw Polytone is food for modern Jazz affiliated and other People who need a soundtrack for Their own elucubrations. The entire cd has been recorded live without overdubs, because there are not other ways to capture the improvisation without a scheme’s mood. That’s the reason why no editing has been done.

    KOMAKINO, web-magazine

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