iod.006 : available at BOOMKAT

Boomkat review: Said to have been inspired in equal parts by modern classical composition and his recent study of Buddhism, RJ Valeo releases a proper full-length follow-up to his Type release, September, with this new collection of works released by his own Io imprint. The album took over a year-and-a-half to compose and record, calling upon hardware synthesizers, computer processing, field recording, vinyl-sampling and what Valeo terms "live performance capture". The sheer quality of sound and all the creative details that have gone into shaping the album are on show for all to hear, and Atman certainly makes absorbing usage of cutting edge technology, surfing through pristine drones on the introductory 'Chasm', before warping guitars and bowed strings out of shape for the cinematic follow-up 'Safe Harbour'. There's a sudden directional shift for the ace rhythmic track, 'Through The Noise', which has a close run-in with the sort of immaculate glitch sounds you'd hear on Raster Noton. Opening up a little, 'The Whole Truth' and 'Richter Scale 6' launch into a kind of abstract techno mould, reminding you that Valeo is also an accomplished dancefloor producer under his Isomer Transition guise. There are more great beats towards the end of the album too, with 'The World Of Tomorrow', 'Late Night Hours' and 'The Other One' all breathing life into ear-cleansing, panoramic soundscapes - each using every nook and corner of the mix for great headphone listening. First class electronica from this seasoned and inventive producer.


iod.005 : available at BOOMKAT

Boomkat review: Another winning entry into Richard J Valeo's more experimental catalogue, this two-part exploration of high-end synthesis and avant-garde digital drone finds the Isomer Transition man shifting into some of his most engrossing material to date. 'When Darkness Falls' boasts a dynamic range that stretches between beams of metallic resonance and hushed, spooky sci-fi tones evocative of something you'd expect to hear in an abandoned space station. 'Beside The Beach' offers a more textured palette, gathering up yet more artfully constructed drone signals and combining them with coarsely tactile field recordings. This is no easy-going, conveniently harmonious confluence of sound waves though, and there's an undercurrent of darkness running through the EP that's highly refreshing.


iod.004 : available at BOOMKAT

Boomkat review: Programmatic Responses was the first release from RJ Valeo since his September LP on Type Records, and although the format of these electronic compositions tends towards abstraction, these beat-driven constructions bear all the hallmarks of top class IDM-influenced electronica. Rhythms glide in and out of phase with one another, offsetting finely pieced together drum patterns against slow synth string swells and electro-influenced basslines that take hold during the latter stages of 'Response One'. The second half of the release operates according to a similar formula, deriving influence from LP5-era Autechre, supplying a quarter-hour of classy, esoteric beats and disjointed melody.


iod.003 : available at BOOMKAT

Boomkat review: Another helping of RJ Valeo's more experimental output, the Devolutions series sounds like its come from an entirely different artist than the one responsible for those Isomer Transition 12"s. Valeo has a close run-in with the abstract digital world evoked by the Line label, stretching out pristine tones with an in-depth studiousness that brings to mind the work of Steinbruchel on the likes of 'Construct 06', while harsher sonorities are dragged out elsewhere, combining brittle digital noise outbursts with steady robotic drones much as you'd hear from Machinefabriek on his most essential output. A hugely compelling release for all fans of abstract electronics.


iod.002 : available at BOOMKAT

Boomkat review: Returning under his own name after recent activity as Isomer Transition, Type's very excellent RJ Valeo resumes more experimental duties, momentarily setting aside his preoccupations with techno formats. Hardware Excursions Vol. 1 finds the New York producer exploring deep and extended freeform synthesizer explorations, at time bordering on drone or even outright noise. You can hear a bit of a sci-fi influence creeping into the music, with combining elements of low frequency, motor-like oscillations and higher pitched, modulated bird-like timbres making up the largest part of Valeo's minimalist sound palette. Structurally these pieces are very liberated, unburdening themselves from anything that might be termed 'form' right up until the distorted industrial rhythm that fires up towards the end of 'Excursion Two'. The result is 16 minutes of dense, surprising and immersive electronic music of the highest order.


iod.001 : available at BOOMKAT

Boomkat review: RJ Valeo sustains his experimental outlook with this selection of masterfully realised micro-drones. The interchange between extreme high frequencies and deep, steady-handed industrial tones on 'Construct 05' immediately brings to mind Richard Chartier's highly disciplined sound world, but these compositions also move towards more extrovert territory, harbouring shadows of half-melodies and flourishes of fractured circuitry. These more exploratory releases find Valeo in glorious form - let's hope that he continues to pursue this beatless direction for a good while longer yet...
transelectronic.net | contact: connect < at > io-records.com | soundcloud | twitter