Donato Wharton – A White Rainbow Spanning The Dark
Serein’s ‘season’ concept caught me, like a fierce predator stalking its prey it lured me in. Now I find myself knee deep in the first work from Donato Wharton in… what is it? six years? Well he hasn’t been completely silent, rather the composer has been working on various sound art commissions for dance and theatre. Donato’s angle here is extremely experimental, on a scale of 1 to Cage I would say it is about a light 8.
This EP is music that accompanies vast dark landscapes, sprawling plains with nothing but grass for miles, and you are at the centre of it. Wharton’s guitar is sparingly strummed, feedback is distilled and extended coldly between bursts of warm bass. It is a beautiful sight when his guitar grabs hold of wonderful harmony near the end of ‘Ink Mountains’ and takes your breath away. Serein (the label) claims Donato has etched out a landscape of his own in the musical sphere and I am going to agree with this. The balance of micro-managing the sounds to a point where each layer is meticulously planned and placed is astounding – but even though Donato works with seemingly small bursts of sound it is surprising to feel so isolated in such a vast landscape that he paints for you.
This is music for wandering through the city at night, sounds for watching neon lights pass you by and frequencies that keep you company while you find yourself in deep thought.
The EP is available in digital formats as well as a limited edition 10″ vinyl at the Serein website