Sergio Díaz De Rojas

Erlebnis by Unsichtbar by Sergio Díaz De Rojas

By Amanda Nordqvist

Artwork by Gertjan Decock and Lore Deuninck

Artwork by Gertjan Decock and Lore Deuninck

A project sprung from a desire to create without over-thinking, Erlebnis is the captivating debut album of Unsichtbar, released through ACR on November 20th, and it’s an album that invites you to listen deeply without searching for explanations – simply enjoy the movement, the textures, and hear it for what it is. Starting off with Ouvertüre the listener is instantly told of what to expect – the experimental, distorted screeching tells of a new, slightly twisted side to the alter ego. The track is followed shortly by Tokio, and I fall deeper into this universe of quiet, uncomplicated enjoyment, as the track reminds me of all the things that come to us absentmindedly; I’m tapped into someone else’s dream, a hauntingly ethereal new reality, and I’m watching from far away. There is such beauty in the unveiled turmoil, and the track breathes in and out so slowly, the thought of waking up is wholly unappealing.

The following track, Mensch, is a collaboration with composer and pianist Sergio Diaz De Rojas, and it shows a mesmerizing distinction between the soft and the rough – the steady, mature rhythmic of the piano is introduced early, contrasted by the sawing that seems childlike at first, curious and explorative, soon growing into a relentless eruption of disorder, taunting the innocent, untainted loyalty of the piano, and relishing in its own freedom to roam. Junges Liebespaar begins almost like the aftermath of its predecessor, slowly progressing into a forlorn outburst of emotion, turning into a poignant tale of what once was, or what could, at one point, have been.

Das Meer instills a sense of floating, telling of the sound the light would make, illuminating the thousands of particles in the air around us, if we could only hear it. The track is lightly treading, slowly fading in and out, moving like the water does. It’s followed by another collaboration, this one with ambient music producer Lee Yi, as An der Zeit ertrinken introduces us to a deeper void, with protruding nuances and quick movement, soaring in and out through different sensations, like a whirlwind of noise and grit.

As the album is starting to come to its end, it does a complete turn-around with Nach dem Sturm, a gentler track that inspires a solemn hope, and ends on the absolutely intriguing Nachspiel – a track that at first glance is playful and light-hearted, but listen closer and it starts to ooze of curious guile, fronting with youthful innocence quickly turning into something bigger, something untrustworthy, but utterly irresistible. It’s a fully memorable ending to this experience that Erlebnis truly is, to listen to something and know that whatever it makes you feel is right, as there are no wrongs – no hidden messages, no secrets or stories, just an album and yet... so much more than just an album. 

Picture by Lore Deuninck

Picture by Lore Deuninck

 

The morning is a river by Sergio Díaz De Rojas and Seraphina Theresa by Sergio Díaz De Rojas

By Amanda Nordqvist

His latest release is bursting with eclectic melodies and proud intimacy, and this might well be the cheeriest we’ve ever seen him — Sergio Diaz de Rojas’ new EP, The Morning is a River, allows us into another chapter of the artist’s world, showing undeniable growth and a braver,  more experimental phase.

In der Sonne flimmert staubige Luft is such a grand introduction that even after several listens, I am still equally floored by the dignity and splendor of this one track. Throwing me back and forth between hope and desperation, it makes me feel as though the ground is disappearing beneath my feet, and I can’t stop repeating it, over and over and over.

When, eventually, I am ready to move on, Flores de Papel begins at a slower pace and moves like the ocean, a hypnotizing momentum – the muted, shimmery track allows for the terrifying feeling of being exposed, left half-open, waiting to be sewn back together. It appears before me like a friend, grabbing my hand, gently tugging me into a different world where the rain pounding on the window doesn’t have to sound like melancholy.

Ich bin Himmel, wenn ich den Himmel liebe, instead, feels unfathomably real in its slow, uncomplicated gloom, a commentary on the unavoidable, telling me to lean steadily into the wind, and wait for the storm to abate – then I am taken back to shaky childhood movies, as Fliedernacht und Birkensaum (Traum) reminds me of endless summer nights and self-inflicted sorrow, the unwillingness to let go of tonight even with the promise of morning. An unbearable feeling of nostalgia is what I am left with as the EP ends, and so hurriedly I put it on repeat, and let myself be washed over with its grandeur again, and again, and again. 

 

Music video premiere: Ich bin Himmel, wenn ich den Himmel liebe by Sergio Díaz De Rojas

By Blake Parker

The music video for Ich bin Himmel, wenn ich den Himmel liebe, taken from the collaboration between Sergio Díaz De Rojas and Seraphina Theresa, The morning Is a river, brings about lulled emotions and soft memories. The piece, visually and musically, feels like an afternoon in one’s adolescence when they were alone in the house; waiting for something or someone, not doing anything but not doing nothing either. The project evokes a kind of limbo —even a meditative state— where wandering around the house affords glimpses into little beauties otherwise unnoticed, and the act of non-doing creates in itself an internal peacefulness.

Sergio’s piano, inspired by the tentative improvisations of Seraphina on the same instrument, is full and wholly satisfying to the ear. While the chords and melodies wander back and forth with easygoing pace, one aspect stands out against many other piano pieces of this nature. The richness of low notes that move as their own line of melody is a rare treat, as all too often pianists seem to shy from the lower notes on the instrument for the purposes of melodies.

Seraphina’s visual works blend together video and photo elements in the same, simple medium. Moments of the music video may offer thoughtful atmospheric shots, while other moments focus acutely on a detail or smaller, still work. The shots in which she appears flow beautifully with the atmospheric ones, as the human form in the frame melts into the same inanimate and dreamy backgrounds.

An experiment I tried with this piece was to listen first, with my eyes closed; then watch, without audio. If the music struck me emotionally I would open my eyes to peek for a second, and if the visuals struck me similarly, I would turn the volume up for a split second. While certainly an unorthodox way to view a music video, it was a truly impactful experience that exhibited even further the beauty of this project as a collaborative work. Whatever way you may view this video, you are sure to finish with a lighter conscience and —if even slightly— more of a smile than before. 

 

Unsaid Words' anniversary by Sergio Díaz De Rojas

By Andy Schiaffino

September 30th marks the one-year anniversary of the release of our very own Sergio Díaz De Rojas’ album, Unsaid Words; he has released two EPs since then and is now working on his second album and a side project called Unsichtbar

Piano scores, violoncello and sounds from his surroundings give Unsaid Words an overwhelming sense of melancholia – the lack of vocals allows much more room for interpretation than if there had been any easily decipherable lyrics. The album is made up of three parts, representing Díaz De Rojas’ past, present and future. Each part is separated by a respective poem, and there are illustrations and videos accompanying the music. In celebration of the anniversary, a new video was released for Paris: the old-timey black and white video depicts an unidentifiable person walking around several different areas of Paris, with, of course, Paris playing in the background. 


You can download and stream Sergio’s music on Spotify and Bandcamp. You can also view the videos, art and poetry created for Unsaid Words at his website

Unsaid Words by Sergio Díaz De Rojas by Sergio Díaz De Rojas

By Amanda Nordqvist

In a hurricane of emotion and musical intrigue, 21-year-old Sergio Diaz de Rojas’ first album has the ability to truly open your eyes to the possibilities of art, mixing hopeful poetry with both vivid and, at times, intricately minimalistic compositions – it seems a narration of his world, an outstretched hand welcoming you to follow him, and to simply listen.

While being Sergio’s first ever real project, Unsaid Words is no mere album – it works more as a platform, inviting and inspiring other forms of art to collaborate. He uses poetry written by Falon Blanchard as gateways into different parts of the album, a glorious way to put into words what his pieces convey, and a careful break in the flow of his music. Delightful illustrations by Flora Cecilia Elsa Liedgren add yet another dimension to Sergio’s album, laying down just another piece of the grand puzzle that Unsaid Words truly is.

The introductory poem, Overture, an ode to the miracle of music, quickly leads into the silently cheerful Serendipity. It’s a beautiful piece, brimming with a shy desire to explore, with homely background noises offering a peaceful environment for the listener to get lost in. The theme continues as Sergio incorporates the sound of the ocean in his following piece, Calmness – and its title sums it up quite perfectly.

Throughout the album, Sergio’s love of the arts shines through so clearly, it’s blinding. The utterly captivating piano, supported by the heartbreakingly beautiful song of the cello, paired with the everyday noises of (what one can assume is) Sergio’s life, adds up to an undeniably compelling album. Ending with two strong, romantically dramatic pieces, Unsaid Words truly leaves nothing unsaid.

With his first album, Sergio has managed to establish himself as a force to be reckoned with, and could truly have a great impact on the way we view art today – inviting us to allow the arts to be more than just one solid thing. Unsaid Words is likely to be the first of many, many things to come from this young artist, and I, for one, can’t wait.


Unsaid Words is available for streaming on SoundCloud and Spotify, and
available for purchase on Bandcamp and iTunes.