The award-winning New York club Cielo adds another album to their successful collection with their fourth compilation “Volare: Various Artists.” The two-disc album is mixed and compiled by club owner Nicolas Matar and resident DJ Willie Graff, who promises on the album art to “guide your night with a stellar mix of deep and soulful house vibes.”
Usually club-endorsed albums are meant to promote music at its best, which is why I was left dissatisfied. The duo’s attempt to produce a “stellar mix” falls short particularly on the first disc, named Departure because of the recurring Latin-style baselines.
The disc tries to promise individuality in each song, yet gradually, track after track, the music merges into a blur of the generic female singer among the fast-paced rhythms. Luckily, the second disc, Arrival, shows the talent these DJs have. It celebrates the diversity the club Cielo invites by using tracks like the outstanding Samim remix of Pier Bucci’s “Hay Consuelo.” The echoing, dark, emotive voice is cleverly united with unpredictable pulses that place you into the club’s unique setting. “Bring on the Night,” the Rocco Trodeep remix is also commanded by the intense vocals and emphasizes the distinctive style of the duo. However, they have clearly tried too hard to recreate the sequence of tracks of a Cielo club night, which comes off as excessive. The tracks are drawn out, making this album hard to listen to, and the poignant songs are overshadowed as a result. The record is diminished as a compilation with wasteful filler songs. The listener is challenged too often to search for its triumphs.
Gemma Dempster may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.