Drawing inspiration from legendary experimental composer Luciano Berio’s Wasserklavier, Italian-born, Berlin-based musician Julian Zyklus melts lilting piano into flowing aquatic tones.
Julian Zyklus has been playing piano since he was five, but in recent years his attentions have been turned to the world of experimental electronics. On Waterpiano n. 2, the artist combines both facets of his musical practice into a gorgeous sequence of lilting piano and diaphanous sound design. “It basically blends my love for the piano and Impressionism period,with my endless interest for electronic music and technology and, in this specific case, for the delay,” he explains.
“I basically created from scratch several patches of digital and modular modulated delays I processed my piano with, trying to turn its keys into water notes. Conceptually speaking, it is strongly inspired by the masterpiece Wasserklavier (the German word for Water Piano) by the Italian Maestro Luciano Berio, but I developed that concept in a sound design dimension, reaching out for something pretty original in terms of sound research.” The weightless delicacy of Chopin, Bach, Debussy and Satie flows through Zyklus’s playing, augmented with his thrillingly tactile approach to sound design.
Multidisciplinary artist Yoshi Sodeoka lends his neo-psychedelic aesthetic to Zyklus’s sounds in the track’s visual, matching the irresistible physicality of his aquatic sound design with technicolour textures and hypnotic shimmer, illuminating his ocean of sound. “The collaboration with Yoshi was something totally unexpected for me,” explains Zyklus. “I was a huge fan of his art and I simply wrote him asking for a collaboration,” he admits.