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Bola del Desierto

Balmat Barcelona, Spain – 27 de septiembre de 2018

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Darío del Moral and Susana Hernández don’t hail from the desert, but there’s something about the windswept and subtly reverberating sounds they make as Bola del Desierto (which means «tumbleweed» in Spanish) that makes the duo’s chosen moniker feel just about perfect. Although their self-titled debut album is far from aimless, it’s also in no hurry to arrive at its destination; often moving with the urgency of a tortoise shuffling across a sun-soaked landscape, its compositions bathe slowly brewing melodies in a thin layer of fuzz that’s simultaneously both warmly comforting and pleasantly disorienting.

The Bola del Desierto LP was actually created in 2015, while del Moral and Hernández were living together in the Spanish city of Sevilla. The two come from different backgrounds – del Moral is a multi-instrumentalist who’s played in a number of different bands, while Hernández is a classically trained pianist with a long history in electronic music who also DJs and makes music on her own under the names Ylia and Terence – but this record finds them coming together around a remarkably stripped-down approach. Created with nothing but electric guitar, a Juno-106 synthesizer and a delay pedal, the album quite literally consists entirely of first takes. In truth, the music was originally created as part of a long-form improvisational jam; it was only after listening back months later that del Moral and Hernández realized that numerous excerpts from the larger piece also worked on their own as actual songs.

Despite the record’s spontaneous beginnings, Bola del Desierto ultimately helped inspire a couple of entirely new label ventures. The album is being released on vinyl via Animah Records, a new imprint headed up by Hernández (who’s now based in Barcelona) and the mysterious Tony Green Tea. On cassette, the music will appear on Discos de Nuestra Señora en Sevilla, a recently established tape outpost with del Moral at the helm. The two young labels are jointly issuing the digital version of the album, and the music will also be presented live via a series of audio-visual shows featuring the video work of Música Prepost.

Much like its namesake plant, Bola del Desierto has traveled along a circuitous path that was entirely unplanned, yet the record’s unhurried wanderlust is ultimately one of its greatest strengths. It’s often said that a journey can be more important than the destination, and this album has taken the idea a step further, luxuriating in the former while paying no mind to the latter.

Guitar: Darío del Moral
Synth: Susana Hernández
Recorded and mixed by Susana Hernández
Mastered by Timothy Stollenwerk at Stereophonic Mastering
Digital co-release by Animah Records and Discos de Nuestra Señora
Vinyl edition by Animah Records
Cassette edition by Discos de Nuestra Señora