By Maria Lubanovic, Copy Editor
[Ghostly International, 2018]
Key Tracks: “Swiss Bicycle”, “Town Square”, “Terraformer”
Let your mind wander to a new place – literally. Electronic musician Geotic’s album, Traversa, invites the listener to take a journey through tracks named after places and different forms of traveling. From a simple “Knapsack” to a “Maglev”, Geotic’s smooth beats create a calming landscape for us to explore.
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There are only eight tracks on the album, but each is longer than five minutes long, and most of the tracks are purely instrumental. Geotic does a beautiful job of mixing modern elements with more classical instruments like violins and piano.
Though some of the names don’t always seem purposeful, tracks like “Swiss Bicycle” totally fit the named theme. “Swiss Bicycle” has a rhythmic and almost round sounding melody, with the arpeggios mimicking the kind of motion pedals make. The track seems to roll over imaginary hills and around tight corners. Slight metal ticking sounds can sometimes be heard under the instrumentals, which connects the bike theme even more. The only problem with this track is that the ride is a little longer than the average cyclist would enjoy.
“Harbor Drive” uses elements of piano and soft beats as the main theme. Before the track gets monotonous, the main elements will drop out to an almost breathless swirling. The main elements will return, but with a different theme and new background tones. At the end of the track, there is a slight rush of water and then complete silence.
“Aerostat” is one of the only tracks with lyrics. It starts out soft and flowing with violins and a soft beating, almost like a heart. The track stays at this same level throughout, and it almost has the listener wish for some sort of lyrical or instrumental swell. And it almost comes. The beating gets faster and the lyrics get a little louder, but then both completely drop out.
Some of the instrumental moments will come back in other tracks. “Town Square” uses some of the arpeggios from “Swiss Bicycle” very faintly, but they are still there. The track uses optimistic blips and glittery synth moments to give a feeling of a busy but friendly neighborhood.
Not every track follows the soft and easy flow. This seems to drop off in the last three tracks of the album. “Terraformer” frequently uses minor and diminished instrumentals and also drops the rhythm sometimes to create a syncopated moment. “Maglev” does a similar thing but, as the last track, it is longer and takes time to come to a climactic moment through rising violins.
Bliss out for a minute. Take a little vacation at your desk. Let Geotic take you there.