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IRM Indie Rock Magazine  ||  CHAIN DLK  ||  Dagheisha  ||  IRM Indie Rock Magazine  ||  Vital Weekly  ||  A Trompa  ||  Flur



released on: http://kvitnu.com (info here)

buy/shop on Bandcamp:


interview on BODYSPACE about Filament (portuguese) here

pictures + video from Filament concert on 5th Kvitnu Fest in Kyiv, Ukrain here
pictures + video from Filament concert on SEMIBREE Festival, Braga, Portugal here


* nominated for QWARTZ ELECTRONIC MUSIC AWARDS 2013 in the category Experimentation Qwartz

one of the best drone/ambient albums of the year 2011  IRM - Indie Rock Magazine

All  texts integrally reproduced

"Here the sequences impress themselves in an iterated, hybrid union of melodious envelopes and synthetic drones; ambient interlacing characterized by very dilated and hypnotic knits. A sense of suspension fills the entire project. "Our everyday life seems to be always more polluted by messages of every kind", says the author Vitor Joaquim "and what is not intense and sharp has no effectiveness". The energy of this work is generated through a sensitivity to microvariations and soft breathes, ravenous, restless mutterings and the gnawing, elliptical modulations of the scans that are modeled through many evolutions of an immanent sonification. As the electric current crosses the air, the tension of brutally intense moments fills the narrative space. It seems unnatural, then, to escape from the continuum of a constantly active perception, according to what is more conventional or appears as the current object of devotion. Effectively marking nonlinear spaces fraught with auditive winces and characterized by many shades and urges, "Filament" stands out for its sophisticated and restless experimental nature. In the very rarefied predisposition of the elements, intense and ghostly, the auditive microemergencies and the recurring successions are well integrated, with abstractions seemingly generated from thin mechanical disturbances. "'We still have our hearts to feel what beat is, and what beat means. We don't need to push ourselves to the edge of ourselves at every moment."
Aurelio Cianciotta
> Neural June 19, 2012  (IT)

Cela fait quelques années que l’on suit le travail de Vitor Joaquim, mais d’un peu trop loin, la faute peut-être à des productions assez espacées. D’origine portugaise, on le découvrait logiquement en 2005 sur le label Cronica Electronica chez qui il sortait le sublime album Flow en 2006.
Surprise donc de le retrouver aujourd’hui sur le label ukrainien Kvitnu chez qui il apporte une tonalité nouvelle. En effet, Kvitnu est tout de même connu pour ses sonorités arides, incisives et cette nouvelle production du portugais est à rapprocher d’une ambient feutrée, parsemée de sonorités expérimentales, mystérieuses, tenant parfois du glitch.
Vous n’y échapperez pas, difficile de parler d’un disque Kvitnu sans s’arrêter sur le superbe packaging, toujours designé par Zavoloka : graphisme noir et blanc tout en courbes, effet embossé sur quelques stries et impression argentée font de cet objet un petit bijou.
Le disque se divise en 5 pistes oscillant entre 6 et 14mn, durées idéales pour se laisser perdre dans ces dédales ambient. Nappes douces, feutrées, chuintements, tonalités répétitives pour créer une certaine addiction, frétillements arides de laptop et autres clicks sont au programme de Filaments and Voids. Notre morceau préféré restera certainement Filaments and Walls qui débute par un jeu de guitare fracturée, ponctué d’infrabasses et de bribes vocales. Petit à petit les éléments se mettent en place, des boucles se forment et créent de subtiles mélodies tandis que des souffles envoutants ne cessent de passer. Un procédé que l’on retrouvera en partie sur les 13mn de Filaments of Conformity.
Deux titres se distinguent un peu. Filament d’une part, se révèle beaucoup plus abstrait, plus ambient, marqué par de nombreux bruitages qui feront penser à une nuit à la belle étoile sur des nappes qui nous rappellent le 
Prophecy Theme composé par Brian Eno pour le film DuneFilaments of Devotion d’autre part que l’on rapprochera de Fennesz avec ses guitares recouvertes de grésillements, ponctuées ici d’une rythmique lourde et lente et de laptops syncopés.
Ambient et cotonneux, chuintant et grésillant, aride par endroit, juste ce qu’il faut pour ajouter un certain relief, ce nouvel album de Vitor Joaquim est un gros coup de cœur !"
> Fabrice ALLARD
> Ether Real 15/08/2012

“We live in a world full of information and in risk of permanent ignorance”. Vitor Joaquim is well aware of sensible people’s frustration at the impossibility of retaining significance nowadays, thus he devised Filament as a response to a situation that he obviously doesn’t like. The result is a five-track CD of elaborately mild electronica: calm enough to lull a relaxed listener into partial oblivion, organically active to the point of allowing the detection of thousands of different impulses and micro-codes. The trip is constellated by hints to the interchangeability of various states. Liquid to solid, to gaseous; synthetic to semi-vocal; rhythmically charged to almost motionless. Occasionally, the tones get very near to the darker sides of ambient, a level of oppressiveness taking command in bleak scenarios symbolizing a lack of human improvement. In the finest sections, Joaquim chose to utilize hypnotic looping, which he does with definite class and balance, protracting the mesmerism until it’s strictly necessary and never abandoning the music to a total dearth of structural development. Leaving certain cosmetic factors visible, but still keeping control on the depth of his statement, the Portuguese composer has created a milieu for fluctuating between nerve-balming meditation and the urgency of restoring a measure of normality in a gradually dissolving system of communication."
Massimo Ricci
> Touching Extremes April 11, 2012

Kvitnu keeps on with their quest putting out "high blood pressure music". This time it's Portuguese ambient electronic artist Vitor Joaquim and his album Filament. Described by the label to be: '...a silent scream against the massacre of intensity and constant pulse coming from out of us.'

Vitor Joaquim's Filament reached 9th place among Top ambient albums of 2011 by French e-zine Indie Rock Mag, in competition with artists such as Aidan Baker, Tim Hecker, Sun Thief and Cindytalk, and beating Fennesz + Sakamoto. Filament, in five movements, is music composed and performed by Vitor Joaquim. As usual the delicious Kvitnu label artwork design is done by Zavoloka. Must be one of the finest labels around when it comes to CD design.

Vitor Joaquim states: 'Our daily life is being more and more polluted with fast and short messages. What is not intense and sharp has no effectiveness. The sense of belonging and timeless breathe is more and more away from us. We live in a world full of information and in risk of permanent ignorance. We are not aloud to stay, breath, and keep staying. We are constantly pushed toward something. Whatever it is something vital for us, or absolutely nonsense. It's a time where only short sentences can be effective. It's the time of buzzwords and sound bites. A time where's devotion is being displaced from every gesture that we do. All is reduced to a task, all must be easy and logical. This is what Joaquim wants to fight, or make a statement against. Filament is brutal, hardcore ambient. It starts out with "Filament and Voids" like being in the middle of a waste winter desert, when all of a sudden the disturbance of electric storms appear. One can hear (and almost see) the passage of an electric current through the air out of the speakers. The spooky atmosphere is underlined by a deep bass punching your stomach. "Filament and Walls" follows, and I see gigantic, empty factory halls - wall-to-wall white-frozen with a halo of steam. It's a brutally intense movement.

The title track is a more careful composition, but the intensity of the album's thread and theme is present. "Filament of Conformity" and "Filament of Devotion" fill the rest of the album, summing up Joaquim's view of the modern world. This our modern, hectic society, with no time to stop for a break/breath and summarize before moving on in a hastily way. The closing track is the most 'conventional' one.

The currents and undercurrents of Filament are threatening and fascinating to listen to. It's a massive piece (some 52 minutes long) of ambience for ears and body. You'd better listen well prepared for entering a sonic wasteland. It's not an easy journey. Like Joaquim says: 'We still have our hearts to feel what beat is, and what beat means. We don't need to push ourselves to the edge of ourselves at every moment. Time needs to recover he's (sic) own time. Filament is my answer to that question. An answer that is not linear, not sharp, not short, not fast, not easy. An answer that is all the contrary, having the ear and the listening as a corridor for a better understanding of the world and ourselves. Filament is complex, extended, nonlinear and concentrated on the detail. Like life in itself...'
> Håvard Oppøyen
> Luna Kafé 12/10/11 (NO)

Musical Coma

Explorador electrónico português assina disco próprio de um peixe dentro de água.

é aquilo que Vitor Joaquim confessou ser: um trabalho urgente, fruto da ânsia de não produzir um disco a solo há muito tempo. E apesar de ser um disco feito com inquietação e desassossego, longe da sua casa de sempre (a Crónica), Filament é um disco pensado e reflectido, com uma maturidade que está apenas ao alcance de quem pensa a sua obra como um todo.
Vitor Joaquim foi forçado a emigrar. Encontrou a sua nova casa na Ucrânia e, talvez inspirado pelos ventos frios, desenhou cinco paisagens gélidas; cinco filamentos ricos em fibra e texturalmente complexos. Senão veja-se “Filaments and Walls”, intensa erupção electrónica de camadas densas de não-melodia, redemoinho que convoca um estado quase apocalíptico onde restam apenas as máquinas; ou o pára-arranca cromático de “Filaments of Devotion”.
É lugar-comum dizê-lo mas é verdade. Este é um disco que prova um contínuo amadurecimento, de alguém que se sente cada vez melhor no seu corpo e sabe que não precisa de fazer cedências no seu trabalho; um disco que encontra Vitor Joaquim num belo momento de forma. Em dias conturbados como estes, Filament funciona como um escape em cinco andamentos.
> André Gomes
> Bodyspace 01.02.2012 (PT)

Vitor Joaquim has been a prolific and esteemed producer since the nineties and is considered one of Portugal’s finest electronic artists, and his latest for the Ukrainian Kvitnu label will only further his reputation. As the title implies Filament works in precise digital shards, familiar from the post clicks n’ cuts language of Raster Noton, 12k and so on. Where Joaquim distinguishes himself is in the vague industrial murkiness covering these details, like a layer of grey soot deposited on each tone, everything lightly charred and blackened.
Hence it’s a much bleaker offering than that of his contemporaries, a post-apocalyptic vision of laptop production, revealing the promises left unfulfilled by technological advancement. The title work is emblematic of this vision, a slow-moving smeared backdrop comprised of choppy choral drones and digital insectoid chatter, all downcast and sad. ‘Filaments and Walls’ employs bolder gestures, faint guitar tones flickering beside a messy scatter of white noise chunks and bursts of fizz, cinematic like Klimek. ‘Filaments of Devotion’ combines Tim Hecker-esque feedback with cavernous sub-bass whoomps, a suitably gothic finale to such a convincingly pessimistic document.
> Cyclic Defrost  5.12.2011

" 2011, derniers regards en arrière : 11 albums drone/ambient

A l’heure de tirer les bilans de ce cru annuel particulièrement fourni, plusieurs solutions s’offraient à moi : vous dévoiler mes 1428,57 disques favoris de 2011 et leur évolution en spirale logarithmique tendant vers un nombre ’x’ = infini d’abstractions métaphysiques, ou choisir tout simplement de parler à la première personne pour vous présenter à intervalles tout sauf réguliers mes coups de cœur de l’année par catégories arbitraires, au jour le jour, à l’instant ’t’ et selon mon impulsion du moment. Vous l’aurez compris, l’exercice compulsif éminemment rigide et bien souvent abstrait même pour le lecteur averti s’est donc trouvé relégué côté forum, mais en contrepartie c’est par l’ambient sous toutes ses formes que débutera cette série de regards en arrière, un passage obligé depuis l’avènement de Bandcamp en l’an 10 du règne d’Aidan Baker Le Grand.
9. Vitor Joaquim - Filament
Du post-rock à la chillwave en passant par l’IDM, le Portugal nous aura révélé cet année un vivier de talents insoupçonnés. J’aurais ainsi pu vous reparler de Leonardo Rosado - mentionné parmi les dauphins de ce classement malheureusement bien trop restreint - et de son ambient évanescente et fragile associée désormais à la voix de Birds Of Passage, mais ç’aurait été sans compter sur ma fâcheuse tendance à céder au côté obscur, une faiblesse que sont venues nourrir les nappes instables de Vitor Joaquim dont le dark ambient infrasonique zébré de glitchs fugaces et dissonants porte à la perfection son nom de Filament. L’une des plus belles réussites du label Kvitnu cette année, parmi d’autres sur lesquels j’aurai bientôt l’occasion de m’étendre dans une prochaine sélection consacrée aux musiques électroniques.
IRM Indie Rock Magazine 06.12.2011 (FR)

"Both astrophiles' and philosophers' imagination could be immediately spurred by this release signed by the talented Portuguese composer Vitor Joaquim and issued by Kvitnu, an Ukranian label, which has recently focused on the Portuguese electronics.Vitor's not really a newcomer as he performs since the late 80ies, an experience confirmed by a weighty curriculum, full of important collaborations such as the ones with Scanner, Colleen, Phil Niblock, o.blaat, Ran Slavin and many others, and releases such as Flow, considered as one of the best electronic record of 2006, and Tales from Chaos under the moniker Free Field, whose musical stature deserved the inclusin amidst the ten best record of the Portuguese electronic music scene. As a matter of fact the first two tracks, "Filaments and Void" and "Filaments and Walls", could refer to some "spiritual" nourishments for many astronomers and not only for their titles - voids are those empty spaces between filaments, arguably formed by baryon acoustic oscillations (it's undeniable the fascination surrounding the idea of a sonic wave on the basis of the creation!), while wall is a different way of naming galaxy filaments, the largest known structures in the universe -, but also for their sound, where some sound tricks close to the improvisational scene such as the usage of connections in order to "burn" frequencies intertwined with cinematic transitional effects (such as over-delayed subtones, explosions and hypnotical drones) are going to launch the listener into sidereal spaces. To be honest, the conceptual framework implied by Vitor's reasoning in order to decipher this release seems more referred to cognitive sciences as filament sounds like artist's answer informational voids, created by a plenty of fast, short and shallow messages filling our daily lives, where such a lack in consistency seems to suck away and soak up all the real contents of life's moments, an emotionless uniformity reducing everything to a task or to an act of devotion to the cold perfection of formal logic. The third track, Filament, could be thought as the gradual strengthening of that silent scream against what Vitor describes as "a massacre of intensity and constant pulse coming from out of us", "an answer that is not linear, not sharp, not fast, not easy", a sort of rocketship which he makes travel to explore conformity and devotion in the fourth (such a lovely piece of minimal dark ambient close to some electronic buzzing by Benge or Monoceros) and fifth (my favorite one whereas such an SOS distress signal seems to get gradually more and more concrete) track. Really seducing stuff! "

> Vito Camarretta (id#6699)

L'interesse della Kvitnu nei confronti della scena elettronica sperimentale portoghese non è motivato solamente dal talento degli Sturqen ma anche dagli scabrosi filamenti digitali di questo artista che ha iniziato il suo tortuoso percorso nei meandri della dance contemporanea verso la fine degli anni ottanta. Le collaborazioni con Vera Mantero, Paulo Ribeiro e Rui Horta hanno arricchito un curriculum ricco di lavori per il teatro e installazioni video. 'Tales From Chaos' – pubblicato come Free Field – venne considerato come uno dei dieci dischi di elettronica più belli della scena locale mentre 'Flow', vecchio di cinque anni ma ancora tremendamente attuale, ha ottenuto riconoscimenti importanti a livello internazionale. Adesso i filamenti di Vitor Joaquim si liberano in un mondo stracolmo di informazioni inutili nel quale regna l'ignoranza assoluta. Sono complessi, estesi, non lineari e focalizzati sui dettagli. Una risposta alle questioni spazio temporali che affliggono la nostra esistenza. 'Filaments And Walls' e 'Filaments Of Conformity' rappresentano due visioni complementari della medesima problematica e la curiosità di possedere ulteriore materiale di questo manipolatore del domani è irresistibile.
Lorenzo Becciani
> Dagheisha 08/11/2011 (IT)

Le streaming du jour #191 : Vitor Joaquim - ’Filament’ & Sturqen - ’Praga’

Deux visions radicales de la musique électronique moderne et deux preuves supplémentaires que le Portugal rayonne en cette année 2011
Quant à Vitor Joaquim, professeur et chercheur à Porto toujours dans le domaine, évidemment, des musiques créées sur ordinateur, fondateur du festival EME consacré aux arts d’avant-garde, compositeur et improvisateur de bandes-sons pour diverses créations audiovisuelles, performances ou installations, c’est un "vieux" routard du label électro portugais Crónica, que personne ne connaît malheureusement malgré le plébiscite en 2006 de son album
Flow par tout un pan éclairé de la presse spécialisé. Et là vous vous dites : ça doit être bien chiant. Eh bien pas du tout. Car loin de nourrir une ambition "savante", la musique de Joaquim s’aventure plutôt du côté du dark-ambient synthétique qu’on aime, celui, spectral et inquiétant, de Deathprod ou de Pan Sonic, tout en tirant le meilleur des leçons d’architecture dynamique sur zone sismique d’un Tim Hecker ou des édifices à ciel ouvert d’un Jacaszek pour nous proposer ce qui se fait de plus captivant en la matière."
> RabbitInYourHeadlights
Indie Rock Magazine 25.10.2011 (FR)

"Maybe the world of Vital Weekly, Portuguese composer and improviser Vitor Joaquim is perhaps best known as one half of the duo @C, but having also worked with Scanner, Stephan Mathieu, Phill Niblock, Ran Slavin and O.Blaat. His new album we must see as a work against our daily life, in which everything seems to fast and short. Short sentences, lots of information, you know the drill, I gather. Maybe its just some intelligent coup by Joaquim to explain the more ambient nature of his work. Five extended pieces of music, slow music actually. Joaquim is a man to use computer, software, plug ins and all of that to create a fine work. Its, as with most of his work, somewhere between composition and improvisation. My guess is that he does long sessions where he toys around with electro-acoustic sounds, field recordings perhaps but also recordings of acoustic object and such like, and then takes these sessions as building blocks for a composition. All is quite digital here, with a vague notion of rhythm in such pieces as 'Filaments Of Conformity' and 'Filaments Of Devotion', slowly bouncing, like an electro-acoustic version of dub music. The slowness of the music is quite nice on this sunday afternoon - sun shining, but cold, inside with a nice book. Not perhaps his best work, I think, and maybe all just a bit too digital, but actually quite alright." (FdW)

Vital Weekly (NL)

"Mais um trabalho interessante de um dos nomes maiores da cena electrónica experimental lusa."
> Rui Dinis
A Trompa (PT)

Podemos estar mais habituados a ouvir Vitor Joaquim em cima de um palco, mas uma visita à discografia do seu site revela para os mais distraídos uma extensa colecção de obras que traçam um dos mais coerentes corpos de trabalho portugueses em torno da electrónica, bem como um nome recorrente em muitas compilações do género. Quase sempre ligado emocionalmente ao ambientalismo, "Filament" pode encaixar nesse estado de espírito - ou induzi-lo -, dando-nos cinco longos temas onde viajamos por entre estruturas artificiais que nos lembram cenários reais - este jogo duplo tem sido, aliás, uma das suas mais ricas gramáticas desde a estreia fulgurante com "Tales From Chaos" em 1997. É sempre injusto invocar outros músicos para comparações, mas a verdade é que "Filament" não parece dever nada à riqueza que costuma sair das mãos de Fennesz ou Biosphere."
FLUR | mailing LUST #669 | 21 outubro 2011 (PT)