Subexotic Records are excited to unveil the latest addition to our roster – Counter Silence, aka Southend based composer/producer Col Ventura.
The debut album from Counter Silence, entitled Knowing the right question to ask, is in the can and release plans are well under way. The LP is likely to be hitting the shops in the next few months, and we’ll be announcing an exact release date shortly. We’re also very pleased to be continuing our ongoing involvement with The Wire magazine’s Wire Tapper series of compilation CDs, with a track from Counter Silence scheduled for inclusion in the November issue (out on October 17th).
Knowing the right question to ask is an assured collection of ambient pieces, both exquisitely dreamlike and achingly melancholy. Painstakingly constructed from intricately layered minimalist piano, subtly developing drones, and beautifully judged reverberation, Counter Silence music is spectral, otherworldly and strangely alluring.
The most obvious points of comparison for Knowing the right question to ask probably lie with the early work of Harold Budd, together with the string of 1970s albums with which Brian Eno pretty much single-handedly defined the ambient genre. On a more contemporary note, the album at times possesses a vibe that recalls the solo work of The Necks’ Chris Abrahams. Col also cites Miles Davis’ classic In A Silent Way as an aesthetic touchstone, and one can sense him reaching towards that feeling of cocooned immersion which Davis achieved so perfectly with his electric jazz landmark.
In keeping with his art school background, Col draws as much inspiration from the visual arts as he does from music, and in particular he aspires towards the shifting colour fields and dense layering found in the work of the abstract expressionists. Indeed, the visual arts connection extends to Col producing all the artwork for Knowing the right question to ask, and it is clearly no coincidence that the striking cover image was produced by layering multiple versions of a basic sketch and applying effects until a kind of uncanny organic abstraction is achieved, mirroring the techniques used to create his music.
Counter Silence. Against silence? Or silence as a kind of implacable response? The name is ambiguous, and deliberately so, perfectly evoking the music’s sense of existing at the cusp, emergent but veiled in a shroud of intangibility. The silence is golden.
Check out the Counter Silence artist page for more information and to stream a track from the album.