steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Donato Wharton

"Body Isolations" CD

City Centre Offices

Genres: experimental, ambient

November 2006

Body Isolations is London-based Donato Wharton's second full-length, following 2004's Trabanten. His website features a blurry and expressionless picture of himself, and that is a pretty accurate indicator of what this record is like. Soft, melodic soundscapes express a sort of uncertainty and eerieness on Body Isolations, which is the most genuinely beautiful experimental record I've heard in awhile. To pinpoint Wharton's style is a tad challenging - it's very soundscape oriented, with atmospheric compositions recalling post-rock and ambient traditions. There are solid contributions from both electronic and non-electronic sources; drones and digital manipulation are used for sure, but much melody is added from guitar and piano, as well as voice on the wonderful "Blue Skied Demon." Repetition is often used on Body Isolations to achieve a kind of eerie, pretty yet mechanical atmosphere - "Transparencies" and unsettling "The End of the American Century" exemplify this. The pieces themselves seem like fragments, yet they flow seamlessly and seldom leave you expecting more; taken as a whole, Body Isolations is mesmerizing and powerful - a potent example of sound sculpted to be beautifully unsettling. Indeed, even at its most pristine and pretty moments, this has something lurking beyond the superficial - a quality that is hard to explain but impossible to ignore.

mp3s (from absentia


Fun Fact: In addition to being a sound artist, Donato Wharton works as a freelance Theatre Sound Operator.

Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 9 tracks, 34:08, distributed by the label, released 2006]