Album Appreciation: Tiatoma/ You by Agile Experiments

As regular readers may know I am a big fan of Dave De Rose’s Agile Experiments project, the origins of which I’ve covered in a previous post here. I like the unexpected nature of the releases under this moniker, and appreciate the organic togetherness that the recordings always seems to communicate (and it is my aim to get to a gig once this pandemic has passed).

‘Tiatoma’ and ‘You’ are two more recent releases which I have been itching to cover, but which time and home schooling have prevented me from doing. So now I’m pleased to finally sit down with them and give them a closer listen.

Having listened to ‘Tiatoma’ for some time now I have really come to appreciate it as one of my favourites, and certainly the most eclectic of the recordings so far.

Recorded at the beginning of 2019, it features Saber Rider (Synthesisers, Live Sampling, Loops & FX) and Dimitris Foken (Violin, Guitar, Loops & FX) as well as De Rose (Drums, Bass & FX) over three separate recordings. For me these tracks have an almost transcendent quality… without genre… they feel like vessels which are both made from, and contain, the music… a sort of holistic form which appears before your ears, creating it’s own sonic universe before disappearing again.

For me you really have to approach this music with a totally open mind because if you try to pigeonhole it you somehow miss out. This is great experimental music, and it also free flowing music; not always in the purely sonic sense, but in terms of the ideas that seep through it.

In short it is one of the best things that you will hear this year if you are looking for something that feels fresh and new, and will keep you repeatedly challenged…

While ‘Tiatoma’ was a vinyl release as well as a download… ‘You’ is download only, on Bandcamp at ‘name your price’. It was put out by De Rose during the lockdown as a thanks for supporting the project, and while it represents a series of jams that has never made it onto the vinyl releases it does, nevertheless, still represent a wonderful collection of tracks which are well worth anyone’s time and money.

I really like it as a collection as it acts as a good primer for the the Agile Experiments project ranging from the jazz improvisations of the earlier works, through to the more experimental tomes.

At the centre of it is a terrific twenty minute long improv which really takes you on a jazzy journey of epic proportions featuring Tom Challenger (Saxophone), Colin Somervell (Double Bass) and De Rose (Drums). While other offerings here feel more like fragments… but are no less satisfying for that… particularly when you can rest in the knowledge that there’s plenty more to explore.

All in all then, these are both valuable and worthwhile additions to the Agile Experiments project, and I very much look forward to hearing what comes next from this unique musical venture.

‘Tiatoma’ and ‘You’ are both available to download here. Why not wait for a Bandcamp Friday so that the artist gets more of the proceeds directly!



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