For more than ten years, the American/Mexican drummer and musician Argel Cota has been known for his solo art, in which he always reinvents himself and presents a versatile, diverse sound. Known under the stage name Arhkota aktiv and his latest opus, the ep Spirits is once again a proof of his musical ambition. This collaboration between Arhkota and Venerandi, published via the Dream74 label, is an acoustic experience that not only convinces in terms of composition, but also comes out of the boxes avant-garde and rejects all conventions. Both parties involved in the project prove not only musical skills, but also artistic claim, because the surreal-looking sound design impresses with the break with conventions and a sound that skillfully plays with the listener's imagination.
Arhkota, who collaborated with more than one hundred different music projects over twenty years, made his debut with his self-produced debut album Melancholic Streets and Heartbeats in 2010. With the presented mixture of melancholic sounds, ambient, and dark improv jazz, he has created an avant-garde sound that has broken out of all norms and conventions. In 2021 he released the self-produced record Dreamy Hamilton, which last year followed up with the EP Balloons Of Memories. Now together with Venerandi, Arhkota presents his latest work Spirt, which can truly be described as acoustic art, which plays with fantasy and creates a work of art in the intellectual eye of the listener with timbres with timbres. The progressive recital Uno (Ritual One) comes dark and futuristic from the system and impresses not only with its sound, which directly looms the listener, but also with a progressive arrangement, which recalls the sound of a soundtrack of the game Cyberpunk 2077.
With skillfully imaginative, imaginative implementation, Arhkota and Venerandi give the mainstream a rejection and show what they have on the box in terms of sound design, compositional and production. (Phillip)
While Recital Uno was initially stormily aggressive, the ambient excursion Recital Dos (Ritual Two) is a little gentler to the point, whereby a scary-beautiful eerie mood germinates here, which comes into play through the gloomy synthesizer and choral singing. Progressive and complex nested drums drive the arrangement in the breakbeat and convince with their virtuoso complexity, whereby they move the listener with their groove. Beautiful sound backdrops from choral songs and synthesizers, as well as piano sounds round off the arrangement of Recital Dos and thus conclude an interesting, unfortunately too short-circuited concept work, from which one might hope for more.
Conclusion 10 out of 10: Dark avant-garde mix with ambient influences! Lovers of such music should risk more than just one ear.
Giulia Venerandi and Argel Kota.