Big or profound sensations from small gestures which are carefully arranged. Using a mixture of sacred and profane, or classical and prosaic sound sources, knitted into intricate, fleet-footed compositions that virtually spring into the ear. Profondo Rosa is composer Ailin Grad’s first vinyl album following years embedded and loved in the Argentinian experimental music scene, with past treats on labels Krut, Sun Ark, Orange Milk Records and her own label Abyss, devoted to ‘connecting Latin Juke with the world’.
There’s a playfulness at the heart of Profondo Rosa that’s immediately charming, with a sense of scale and spatialisation in the sounds being toyed with, exploring the strange pleasures and satisfaction in her approach to delightful and fresh feeling sound design. Aylu is known to be as likely to deploy the sound of a finger click, a fizzy drink being cracked open, or a fly buzzing past the ear, as she is drawn to sampling gorgeous strings or instrumentation. Her debut album for Mana constantly builds territories that tug at your heartstrings and then have you grinning five seconds later. This versatility and acceleration has often resulted in her music being compared to footwork, alongside collaboration with other producers experimenting in that sphere; in 2017 she and Foodman put together a dizzying hour of sounds for NTS.
Her miniaturisation of rhythm and ringtone-like sample size could also bring to mind SND circa their warmer softer glitch Tenderlove phase, or perhaps the approach that Teenage Engineering take to designing tools for music making. Each are deriving pleasure from small and satisfying shapes, as well as advocating an object-oriented philosophy and minimalisation in their work that sidesteps a draining of colour. Sound is fun, and in Profondo Rosa it sounds like Aylu has that at the forefront of her mind.
Her hyperreal sound and its link to the languages of electroacoustic or computer music are clear, but she outmanoeuvres many of the overly-academic and formless examples of those genres. Profondo Rosa’s skeletal assembly of objects becomes tunes in an elegant, almost understated way; tactile elements quickly combine and roll into deeper and persuasively emotional places. These compositions give off an air of being very free, very experimental, despite being meticulously artful and studied arrangements on precise and nimble coordinates.