Maze of Sounds (LP)
Janko Nilovic & The Soul Surfers
Montenegrin born in Istanbul, precocious pianist growing up in an embassy, brilliant musician. Prolific composer speaking eight languages, he arranged music for jazz, pop music, adopting multiple identities. For one label, he is Andy Loore; for another, Emiliano Orti. For others, he is called Alan Blackwell or Johnny Montevideo, but behind all these aliases, there is only one man: Janko Nilovic.
Exploring the shelves of musical production, venturing into the less-illuminated corners of library music, Janko Nilovic's name lights up dozens of shelves on which his soundtracks, his records for Editions Neuilly or Sforzando, but above all his twenty albums for Editions Montparnasse, are stored. A considerable and imposing work, rich in orchestrations of keyboards, strings and brass instruments, themes, atmospheres and melodies. A repertoire in which the cinema, television and advertising have come to find their delight ...
Subjected to the sharp blades of samplers, reduced to a few effective seconds, joined with rhythmic beats, some of his tracks have infiltrated hip hop for a long time , leading the most curious to go back to the source to get the complete albums from which the precious loops had been taken. Almost unknown to the general public, Janko Nilovic is a master for the initiated, whether they are at his side in the studio or comfortably seated in their armchair savouring the final result on their turntable. His discretion combined with his long years of silence on the record could lead one to believe that he had cleverly arranged his disappearance from the radar to make Janko Nilovic a mystery that has never been completely solved.
Until this message from The Soul Surfers. A few miles away, in their studio fired up by analog funk, the Muscovites had been put back on the Nilovic track by multi-instrumentalist Shawn Lee. A few passionate discussions later, and the desire for a joint album was already lighting up the amps, making the bass strings shiver and the drum skins tighten. Initiated by the coming and going of scores, the collaboration finally continued in studio for a real exchange, instantly bouncing off proposals, developing ideas in a live group dynamic that distance would have made impossible.
To feel the vibrations accumulated for decades at the CBE studio (like Chatelain Bisson Estardy), a mythical place founded in 1966, in which many albums, especially library, were immortalized. A place where consoles, equipment and instruments were kept as they were, accumulating in their wiring, meters and speakers, endless hours of experimentation and recording.
A place that Janko knew well and where an old acquaintance was waiting for him. A Hammond organ with a Leslie booth whose keys he had already flattered in the past and behind which an improvisation and a single take were enough to complete the eponymous title. Together, Janko Nilovic and The Soul Surfers have built Maze Of Sounds, a musical labyrinth paved by the master's keyboards where the soul-funk groove of the fiery Russians is the listener's thread, his point of reference in this maze of atmospheres and emotions, at once cinematic, nostalgic, dancing, dreamlike and contemplative.
An album where, however, nothing is compartmentalized. Where, blown by the whirlwind strung by a violin quintet, the barriers move preparing the entrance of a Slavic choir, letting a screaming guitar come and go alongside the crystalline liveliness of the Fender Rhodes, organize some rhythmic aerations at the disposal of the samplers.
A fusion between the cleverly blackened scores, between the science of precisely written arrangements and the soul-funk feel of The Soul Surfers. An album such as Janko Nilovic has been dreaming of making for years.
A2. Maze of Sounds
A3. Sweet Path
A4. Say It Softly
B3. Tha Boogee
B4. It Never Ends