Psychic Equalizer -
The Lonely Traveller

(CD 2017, 48:38, Milvus, N/A)

The tracks:
  1- Mezuz(6:18)
  2- An Ocean Of Changes (I-IV)(6:33)
  3- The Lonely Traveller(0:53)
  4- Lágrimas(3:37)
  5- Adrift(2:39)
  6- Peña Labra(2:35)
  7- Flying Over The Caucasus(3:34)
  8- Lovers Meet(6:44)
  9- A Collection Of Marbles(3:53)
10- An Ocean Of Changes (V-VI)(2:20)
11- A Visit To Adelaide(5:11)
12- Nørrebro(2:48)

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Psychic Equalizer is a project of the talented Spanish pianist Hugo Selles. Hugo Selles has settled in Denmark for study. For his project he mainly collected Danish musicians. So Spanish salsa meets Danish rock. In this case it isn't that easy. The Lonely Traveller is namely jazz orientated. By the way, this is the third album of this project.

The project tells us a story of someone's childhood to adulthood. Most of us can imagine the feelings and emotions which comes on the path of growing older. For Hugo Selles it was the base to create an album which expresses these bumps. Further on this album has multi-cultural statements in it. The album cover gives an excellent example of this. It contains 12 pictures of people with all different ethnical backgrounds.

The line-up is: Hugo Selles (grand and upright pianos, piano strings, keyboards, synthesizers, Hammond organ, vocals, string quartet arrangements), Quico Duret (electric guitar, e-bow, effects), Morten Skett (drums, percussion), India Hool (vocals), Carlos Barragán (electric guitar, e-bow, effects), Nikolai Petersen (vibraphone, triangle), Katerina Anagnostidou (celesta), Joaquin Páll Palomares (first violin), Khalida De Ritter (second violin), Johanna Baarlink (viola), Adriana Isaku (cello, vocals) and Jan Irlind (balalaika).
You can draw the conclusion that Hugo Selles is going for authentic instruments instead of mostly samples etc. I like that very much. Nowadays there is enough clutter on the musical market.

It's time to dive into the album. The album is mainly instrumental and starts with the track Mezuz. It is obvious that the piano takes a central role in this song. The first track is serene and has no vocals. At the end of the track a heavy guitar comes in. An Ocean Of Changes starts in a similar way. The song ends with a cacophony of several instruments. The title track is a short, one minute, intermezzo of mainly piano.
On Lágrimas violin and guitar are more prominent present. Vocals are present, but without real lyrics.
Adrift and Peña Labra are both short intermezzo's. The first one is rather lowering, the second is even more down. It's obvious what kind of feeling they try to express.
Flying Over The Caucasus is really jazzy and it reminds me of old parts of Pink Floyd. Lovers Meet and A Collection Of Marbles are both very bright and open songs. These songs make it clear that the recording of this album is fabulous. All instruments sounds so transparent and with a pair of good speakers it seems that this project is right in your living room.
An Ocean Of Changes (the second part) is also very modest. The song gives me a feeling of loneliness. A Visit To Adelaide starts very modestly. Piano takes the lead of course. In the middle section nice guitar parts are put in. Nice song.
The album closes with Nørrebro, a song with melancholic parts in it. Once more there are vocals without lyrics. And once more it reminds me of Pink Floyd.

The Lonely Traveller is a strange album. It is not an album you hear every day. But it's a nice instrumental album. An album with a clue. The clue lies in the music. The music is so strong and so passionate that it grabs me. Great album.

**** Aad Bannink (edited by Tracy van Os van den Abeelen)

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