Ovro - Gegendurchgangenzeit (SPE05034)

Ovro : Gegendurchgangenzeit CD

Gegendurchgangenzeit, released in October 2005, is an ”unplanned album”. This release could be classified under dark ambient and is an exercise on aural pathworking. It is constructed to be listened through at one go with the track titles intended to be used as possible guidance on the way, hinting at stages of visions through the imaginary journey.

Why call this ”unplanned” ? Well, that is exactly what it is, as the sound material started pouring out and demand to be released. Originally this demand was satisfied by ”releasing” the album as a very, very limited edition of only one copy (the artist herself does not have a copy of it!), which was given away as a gift. The owner of the original copy, Some Place Else frontman Niko Skorpio felt the CD deserving a larger audience and talked Ovro over to release the album officially.

Gegendurchgangenzeit An exercise on aural pathworking. Cinematic isolationist dark-ambient soundscapes, very evocative… you are taken through rainy seas, soaked, shipwrecked, underwater, underground… and what sights you see, what beings you meet on the way is left for your subconscious to reveal.

Deep listening for small hours. Sit back, relax and let your mind go.

CD, edition of 500 copies.


“The track titles paint the sound perfectly, An der See (At Sea) makes me feel like I am swimming with goggles on, slowly swimming under water through the surf. Then Ein Wirbel Fährt Auf (A Maelstrom Rises) the sound of the wind turns the water black, I should leave the water but let myself float off, into deep waters. 
The album continues with; Was Hast Du Hier Geweckt? (What Have You Awaken, exactly?), sometimes it sounds like the sound of the wind turning into a submarine’s engine, there’s something down there, oh I wish I was safely on land. Die Widerhalle der Vergangenheit (The Echoes of the Past) Alone and numb I float on the water, the wind plots my course, I am getting cold to the bone, desperation makes me hear things; is it my heartbeat? Ein untergegangenes Kloster (The Sunken Abbey) My mind must be starting to play tricks, the distorted sound of church bells seem to emerge from the deep beneath me. Hören, vielleicht vergessen (To Hear, Perhaps to Forget) I am alone again, albatrosses and other birds, come to see if I am dead, there must be land near. I can not move, I feel cold as ice. All kinds of sounds seem to want to awaken me Hin, aber wie zurück? (There, but How to Get Back?) I am lost; I am losing consciousness, the sounds.., so many sounds and then none at all, the sounds stop!. 
The worst thing that can happen while listening to a CD is reaching the end while you’re completely engulfed into the music, Ovro made me check my cd player to see if it was still powered! Ovro’s Gegendurchgangenzeit is simply way too short. 
The seven tracks take me into another dimension, this is how Dark(underwater)ambient should sound like. This was my first encounter with Ovro’s music and I can only hope that the upcoming CD-EP Mosaick the Serpent will be as beautiful for I need another fix, quick!” (van Leeuwen)

“An oppressive atmosphere in a occupied town, in a occupied country. only Illusion of freedom – no freedom. Cold Fusion – Occupatria – a musical journey on the thin line between urge of freedom and lack of its realisation. 45 minutes of beautiful symphonic Martial music, compared to A Challenge Of Honour, Les Joyaux de la Princesse, with a strong touch of early Dead Can Dance and Graeme Revell’s soundtracks!” (Soleilmoon)

”This collection of seven seamlessly interconnected pieces was originally performed, we are told, “in a living room in Turku, Finland, for an audience of none on a wintry Thursday night in December 2004″. This description of the record’s genesis evoes a sense of inky isolation with almost as uch concision as the music itself, which sets tiny, wriggling sonic events against perpetually gathering glacial drones. This economy of approach seems positively symphonic by comparison with Ovro’s debut release (2003’s Malice in Underland), which used just her voice, as captured by a faulty microphone. Gegendurchgangenzeit is nonetheless an impressively monomaniac achievement – throughout, cold digital winds and abrasive fragments of sound scour icily imagined tundras. The surprise is that such a seemingly dour undertaking ends up being so absorbing. Despite its atmospheric statis, Ovro’s music never stops flowing forward, opening up a succession of dark, compelling vistas.” (The Wire)

” This is the third Ovro release, following ‘Malice In Wonderland’ (see Vital Weekly 395) and ‘Live In Placard #7’ (see Vital Weekly 448) and originally it wasn’t intended to be released. Ovro made the music as a gift, in an edition of one copy, and gave that Niko Skorpio, aka Some Place Else’s main man. He liked the music so much, that he convinced Ovro to release it on CD. It’s moves sideways from the two previous albums, in that sense that this is an entire instrumental album, and nothing of her voice. Ovro plays music here that can best be qualified as dark ambient. The music was recorded live ‘to an audience of none’ and the seven tracks flow into each-other. It’s hard to tell what it is that Ovro does, but it seems that she uses extended sampling of field recordings and that in the process of making music she treats these with all sorts of sound effects and filters. A dark, unworldly journey – maybe a space trip but than one that has an uncertain outcome. Everything is sucked into a black hole. Ambient music with a strong twist for the darker undercurrents in life. Not music that one can easily dream by, but certainly one that reveal some of your darker thoughts.” (Vital Weekly)

“Ovro’s ambience transcends with buzzing and howling sound-transformations toward a subaquatic periphery and echoing clinkings of bells. Still simultaniously it incorporates the imaginative institutions of personal freedom. Ovro has a touch of what could be called a ‘close sound’ which is hidden somewhere in the room’s distance. This distance gets closer & closer and gives a cinematic vibration as time ticks slowly. An ultimate deep listening session for small hours and unexpected juxtapositions of memories.” (Imhotep)

“Seven interlinking tracks make up the 40 minute span of this album, where on one hand the atmosphere is one of being on a blustery windswept cliff, whilst the other draws the listener down into sonar toned aquatic depths and expansive cavernous realms. Subtle loops and tonal shifts give off mild variations to the minimalist compositional structures, yet there is amply going on here to be constantly engaging. Particularly when listened to through headphones the album presents a evocative, surreal and abstract experience that is certainly visually stimulating for the subconscious imagination. 
Concluding a minimalist review for a minimalist album, this is a release well worth your attention.” (Aural Pressure)

“Ovro returns after numerous live performances and some limited edition releases with her second album, which has been anticipated as a larger scale demonstration of how fast and how far this artist from Turku has developed after her limited debut. 

Looking at the surface, you could consider Gegendurchgangenzeit to be completely ordinary dark ambient: the supporting element is the howl of chilling wind and humming, within which you can hear the echoes of bells ringing and surreally underwater sounds. Everything is subdued, but not of the ordinary “as if the music was playing beyond the horizon”, instead it sounds like it was being played behind the wall. Surprisingly, this muffled effect creates amazingly concrete feeling to the music, which is intensified by the liveliness characteristic to Ovro. The liner notes of this album recommend trying to listen to it in different levels of volume. I have noticed the album to also be quite excellent when heard from the next room. 

In my opinion, what determines whether this kind of music is good or not, is whether it feels alive or not – some albums simply seem to contain a soul and life, while others feel like insignificant dabbling, regardless of the structure being static or dynamic. Gegendurchgangenzeit is a rather minimalistic album, yet it is brimming with dynamics. Most of all, it feels like it downright breathes life of its own. It is also a very harmonious whole, so I can only recommend it.” (Kuolleen Musiikin Yhdistys)

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