Soko | Two

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Rock: Jam-band Pop: Piano Moods: Mood: Dreamy
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by Soko

A groovacious panoply of moods, rhythms, melodies, and textures - rendered in stunning fidelity.
Genre: Rock: Jam-band
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Storyteller
Michael Sokolowski, Houston Ross
2:08 album only
2. Plant the Sky
Michael Sokolowski, Houston Ross, Will Coles
8:06 album only
3. Speak Up
Michael Sokolowski, Houston Ross
4:50 album only
4. Dark Beam of the Seine
Michael Sokolowski, Houston Ross
6:08 album only
5. On the Matter of Coping
Michael Sokolowski, Houston Ross
3:20 album only
6. Antidote
Michael Sokolowski, Houston Ross, David Darling, Olumide, Peter Spaar
5:57 album only
7. In-Between, I
Michael Sokolowski, Houston Ross, Johnny Gilmore
3:54 album only
8. Joy of Love
Michael Sokolowski, Houston Ross, Will Coles, Davina Jackson, Davita Jackson, Tim Reynolds, John D'Earth, Peter Spaar, Chris Melchoir, Peter Markush
15:55 album only
9. Rain
Michael Sokolowski, Houston Ross
9:44 album only
10. Bamboo Cool
Michael Sokolowski, Houston Ross
4:41 album only
11. Stella: Reflections
Michael Sokolowski, Houston Ross
2:35 album only
12. In-Between, II
Michael Sokolowski, Houston Ross, Will Coles, Worth Proffitt, John Zias
5:02 album only


Album Notes
Eight years after the release of their critically acclaimed debut, In November Sunlight, Charlottesville, VA-based band Soko have released their second full-length album, Two.

Two's 12 tracks comprise a diversity of styles that range in tone and instrumentation from African/world beat to rock, fusion, and new age. Simple vocal/piano duets like "On the Matter of Coping" give way to layered arrangements of strings, horns, guitars, percussion and vocal choir, such as the 16-minute "Joy of Love."

Each composition inhabits its own discrete world and features its own instrumentation, including various combinations of talking drum, nylon string guitar, piano, bass, vocals, strings, xylophone, and electric guitar. The album contains freshly arranged concert staples from the band's performing years in the 90s ("Plant the Sky," "Dark Beam of the Seine," "Antidote," "The In-between"), new studio collaborations ("Joy of Love," "Bamboo Cool," "Speak Up," "On the Matter of Coping"), and a breathtaking cover of Lennon/McCartney's "Rain."

Soko Two shows the band moving away from a piano/bass/drums trio format to featuring the writing & recording duo of Houston Ross (bass, vocals, talking drum, log drum, percussion triggers, nylon string guitar) and Michael Sokolowski (piano, synthesizers, tar, bells, xylophone, shakers, percussion triggers, electric guitar).

In November Sunlight, the band's debut album, was praised by All Music Guide for its "picturesque melodies" and "exceptional musicianship." It showcased contributions from Dave Matthews, LeRoi Moore, and Tim Reynolds of DMB association, and has been a popular seller internationally.

The guest musicians who contribute to Two, include virtuoso guitarist Reynolds, Grammy-nominated cellist David Darling, former Soko drummer John Gilmore, percussionist Obayanna Olumide, and jazz trumpeter John D'Earth, among many other talented artists.

Rob Evans engineered and mixed the album, and Grammy Award-winning engineer Bob Katz mastered the album.

A booklet within the disc's beautiful packaging contains a gallery of pictures by two very different artists: Bay Area oil & canvas dreamweaver, Dean Gustafson and Charlottesville's pioneering nature imagist, John Grant.

Two: Soko's long-awaited second album, the advent of the band as duo, and featuring track-by-track artwork by two powerful visual artists.



to write a review

Ben Coffelt

Soko Two is an amazing collection of diverse music
Soko's Two is simply amazing. It is a great collection of so many different genres, it will be pleasing to any music lover. Whether you like jazz or world music or rock, it is an album for music lovers by amazing musicians who truly love creating music. Stand out tracks include "Rain", "Storyteller", and the centerpiece of the album "Joy of Love" which includes a wide range of guest musicians. Do yourself a favor and pick this album up.

Pamela Kaechele

TWO is an amazing, multilevel work of art. From the tribal vibes of rhythmic drums in Speak Up, to the Asian flare of Plant the Sky, TWO offers the mind a plethora of sounds and musical genres. My favorite, Antidote is a beautiful weave of piano, cello and bass and literally takes my breath away when I listen to it.

Both Antidote and Stella: Reflections flow so gently and peacefully that they are sure to take the tension from a stressful day out of any listener!

On A Matter of Coping and Joy of Love give the added dimension of Houston Ross's stellar voice, lending a peaceful message to the melodies.

In-between I and II are wonderfully similar, yet different bookends to tracks 8-11. Their rendition of the Beatles Rain is exceptional and refreshing.

This is definitely a CD everyone should have in their musical library. As with all music, best appreciated using a great headset. TWO is a must-have!