Federico Parra - Descending

(To Be) Released November 1, 2014

By Graham White

Federico Parra’s newest experimental work Descending transcends the boundaries of music, finding solace in meditative trances and spiritual tones. There is something incredibly fulfilling about the album as it tip-toes about the listener’s ears. Swirling echo and spiritual vocals create a peaceful environment for the listener, allowing them moments of timelessness in an otherwise hectic day.

One Taste opens the album with powerful percussive instruments and distinct, deep vocals that draw listeners into the otherworldly music. It floats loftily, with incredible vocals chanting below, creating an experience for the listener that is both ethereal and calming. The Other follows with a much different sound, with the vocals taking on a raspy tone over twinkling guitar and bright piano. The vocal tone definitely grows on the listener, becoming quite likable as the track progresses. Into the Forest returns to the spiritual trance, with woodwinds dancing about the listener’s ears. A voice starts chanting, and all one can do is lay back and listen to the pure emotion in the music. It grows with the listener, weaving a seductive tone into a meditative trance. Sombre and self-reflective, the track is truly affective, burrowing it’s sounds into the listener’s heart.

Parra’s work continues with a cover of San Jacinto by Peter Gabriel. The chanting vocals mix into a bumping beat and eagle cries. While I definitely wasn’t expecting electronic beats to be present alongside meditative tracks like One Taste and Into the Forest, San Jacinto is nonetheless interesting, with unexpected beat changes and a clear focus on keeping it experimental. Dancing Voices follows with an exchange of vocal harmonies, creating a lucid, dreamlike state within the listener. It is the sort of track I would love to listen to in an anechoic chamber, so I could be fully immersed in it’s sound! Descending revisits the sound listener’s tasted in The Other, with swirling guitar mixing so well the strange vocality. Constantly growing in intensity, the track holds the listener until it’s completion. Stellar Waves ends the album with the deepest vocality my ears can handle, sounding like a mixture of intense Buddhist chanting and 8-bit whale song. It is possibly the strangest beautiful I have heard.

Descending is an album for the experimentalists. Interesting and spiritual, the album combines meditative trances with electronica, creating a unique listening experience.