Solidum, is an album of unexpected stillness and negative space from William Ryan Fritch, a composer most known for his lush, dense arrangements that teem with a raw kinetic sense of energy.
Typical Fritch records are chock-full of hyper-textural sound, where mechanical noise and small idiosyncrasies of each instrument become an integral part of the music’s character. By contrast, Solidum uses a colder and more rounded sound palette that relies on PZM and boundary mics to capture the upright piano, cello, violin, and harp bowed with rosined fishing line and blend them with digital piano and A Roland JX-3p. This gives the muted acoustics an unnatural smoothness and a pitchy quaver that makes the listener question what is synthesized and what is not. The creative impetus was to see what sense of emotionality and sincerity could be achieved without relying on Fritch’s familiar aesthetic of tactile and vulnerable sounds.
The title Solidum comes from the Latin phrase “in Solidum,” meaning “for the whole.” It’s a mentality that must somehow prevail, at a time when there is less of a sense of closeness than there has been at any point in recent memory.
Many works of art have been made amidst this pandemic and it’s been fascinating seeing how artists have translated the experiences of heightened uncertainty, loneliness and longing for connection. Solidum is Fritch’s one search for connection and deepened empathy in a world where touch and closeness has been so cruelly taken away from our means of showing love.
Total run time: 67 minutes
All music written and recorded by William Ryan Fritch
Artwork by Dorota Jedrusik
Layout and Design by R. Keane
© Lost Tribe Sound LLC / William Ryan Fritch
℗ Settled Scores LLC (ASCAP)