New music fans worldwide will be excited to hear that Zero Times Everything will be releasing their second album “Sound of Music” on August 28, 2021. The release date of this innovative new double album coincides with a private concert the band is giving in Massachusetts, just outside of Boston. On August 21, 2021 Zero Times Everything will release the official video for the 19 minute “Die Nacht Ist Leben.”
The title “Sound Of Music” is derived from the Pythagorean theory of musica universalis or the “music of the spheres” wherein Pythagoreas states that if objects in motion create sound then the planets forever in motion must forever produce sound. This theory has been totally discredited but the notion of the sound of a harmonious planetary-solar-system is the touchstone for the title of the album. There’s also the notion present within the record itself of the dangerous existence of black holes and white holes within this planetary harmony. The gravity of black holes is so strong that once it pulls matter within it nothing, even light, can get out. On the opposite extreme, a white hole in space is a hypothetical region that cannot be entered from the outside, although matter and light can escape from it. Side one is titled “Black Hole” and side two “White Hole.” If the theory is that the movement of the stars produces a harmony, then these holes in space create danger within that harmoniousness.
Zero Times Everything began in 2012 when Richard Sylvarnes invited Tony Geballe and Pietro Russino, who first met at one of Robert Fripp’s Guitar Craft Seminars, to perform a live musical accompaniment to a film he had recently completed called “The Last Words Of Dutch Schultz.” It was supposed to be a singular event, a “project.” But it became quite apparent in the early rehearsals that there was much more potential than a simple one-off project. They immediately began to get invites to play in galleries, at benefit concerts, and even to make music for an artist installation in China. So, almost without realizing it, they became an official band and started working on material for their first record, “Sonic Cinema,” which was released to great critical acclaim on Trey Gunn’s 7D Media label in 2017.
When they finished their first album Richard immediately had the brazen idea that their second album should be a double album. He gave two reasons. One was to experiment, to allow the material to breathe, and not worry about the length of tracks and have to reflexively edit something for reasons of limited space. The second reason was to invite other musicians, mostly avant garde musicians from New York, to contribute their unique talents to this endeavor; even to the extent of redefining what can be considered Zero Times Everything music. These artists include extreme-metal guitarist Reg Bloor, avant pianist Matteo Ramon Arevalos, singer Daria Neumann, percussionist Michael Evans, multi-media artist Bradley Eros, guitarist Zach Layton, turntablist and foley artist Rachael Guma, singer Mikey Kirkpatrick, writer Sven Marquardt, film-projector rhythmatist Bruce McClure, composer and Touch guitarist Markus Reuter, vocalist Patricia Rothberg, and writer Sønje Sylvarnes.
As Richard said, “We wanted to open the door to Zero Times Everything and allow other artists we greatly admire to participate in making the music and use these collaborations to stretch the definition of what Zero Times Everything music can be.” Each of these unique and extraordinary artists have a strong sensibility and signature sound that deeply affected not only the overall sound of a piece but the compositions themselves
The centerpiece of the album is the 19-minute blitzkrieg “Die Nacht Ist Leben” (translated “The Night Is Life”) with words in German by Sven Marquardt, the infamous gatekeeper of the notorious Berlin nightclub Berghain and featuring Reg Bloor on extreme guitar, Bruce McClure’s “wall of terrifying delay,” and Daria on vocals. Richard spent a year searching for the perfect vocalist for this piece. He was searching for a female contralto, like Cher or Marlene Dietrich, and when he was close to giving up the search he found Daria; exactly the voice he heard in his head. This piece pushes the idea of metal to the extreme, and Tony Geballe says “If Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht had had access to digital technology, this is what they would have sounded like.”
The most ambitious track on the album and in Zero Times Everything’s oeuvre is the 26-minute “Lux Aeterna” which they affectionately call “our Supper’s Ready.” This is an apocalyptic song in spiritual, political, and scientific terms. The piece begins with a recording of the late Frederick Neumann, legendary actor, director and friend of Samuel Beckett, reading “The 10 Most Popular Ways for the Word to End” as compiled by scientists at a convention. The middle of the song includes random moments from a 1950’s radio play of Aldous Huxley’s “Brave New World” and the song ends with the somber yet beautiful apocalyptic liturgical text “El Cant de la Sibilla.”
“Sound Of Music” will be the equivalent to a triple album on vinyl, as the band have produced roughly 120 minutes of music on two CDs. The album was recorded over the course of three years and then, in the middle of the mixing, the pandemic hit, stopping all work. This caused a delay of over a year.
Zero Times Everything thanks its audience for their support which allows them to make adventurous, artistically ambitious, non-mainstream music that thrives on the fringe of culture.
Pre-orders are open through Bandcamp: https://zxevery.bandcamp.com/