Avola - Zone


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Avola is the newest incarnation of Portland-based musician/producer Vern Avola, known for her work under the name EMS, and as a member of Elrond and Prizehog.

Early adopters have described the Avola sound as "a squalling, disorienting world of heaviness...washed in layers of ritualistic drone and noise and rhythms......The journey is enthralling."

Zone is a place of high tension, where contrasting layers of sound combine in thrilling ways: the soft and the harsh, the light and the heavy, the playful and the profound, coexist and take on new forms. Epic, cinematic synth swells (e.g. "The Feels") and transcendent guitar drones (e.g. "Shhh" and "Sunrise") layer with glitchy beds of arcade-game beeps, white noise, and gunshot snares. Anthemic, soaring potential is kept in check by dissonance and disjointedness.

The end result feels quite urban – a symphony of city life, with all its simultaneous horror and magnificence – but Zone is in fact music of the desert, recorded and mixed by Avola at a house near Joshua Tree, California.

Zone is not music of any one genre – it is electronic in nature but possesses a deep heaviness that makes it relevant in the context of bands like Thrones and Oxbow with whom Avola has shared stages in the past.

The album artwork was created by Kellesimone Waits.

"Portland-based musician Vern Avola makes electronic music that combines a ferocious wall of sound with a deceptively subtle sense of dynamics. One could call it noise music, except that Avola puts enough into weirdly shifting harmonics as she does into abrasion. One could also call it drone, but Avola's approach to synth music is too rhythmic, itchy, and restless to fit easily under that label. She's recently shared bills with artists including electro-pop eccentric EMA, metal band Big Business, and long-running experimental rock outfit Oxbow, to give you some idea of the difficulty of pigeonholing the project."
–Tone Madison