Connect with us

Album Review

IATO – ‘Family, Vol. 1’ [Album Review]

Complex, fluid, and liberating, ‘Family, Vol. 1’ delivers emancipation from rational thought and provides a rapport with the sublime.



IATO ‘Family, Vol. 1’ album artwork
IATO ‘Family, Vol. 1’ album artwork

Emerging electronic artist IATO, the acronym for Icarus and the Owls, recently released his debut album, Family, Vol. 1. The recording weds soulful, retro melodies with the pulsation of modern electronic music, taking listeners on a journey across time and space.

Born in 1988, IATO grew up listening to a wide range of music, including Tears for Fears, Vangelis, Sparks, and Pink Floyd. Initially hesitant about releasing his music, Detroit’s Get Fresh Studio’s enthusiasm for his sound swayed IATO.

Encompassing 13 tracks, some of the album’s high points comprise the opening track, “Cosmic Encounter,” featuring majestic washes of synths topped by dreamy vocals that together form a caressing sonic voyage into the far reaches of the cosmos. A distant saxophone imbues the outro with soft jazz textures.

The new wave disco rhythm of “Can You Hear Us?” leads to a psychedelic soundscape of swirling, curling colors. “Icarus,” on the other hand, conjures up memories of Styx’s “Mr. Roboto” because of its dystopian feel, like something out of Fritz Lang’s Metropolis.

The mechanistic intro of “Conduit” rolls into fusion jazz savors, followed by taking on an eerie, digital tension as remote voices add portentous pressure. There’s a delicious buoyant, chanting feel to “Beyond the Sea,” followed by the Gregorian-like vocals of “I Want to Believe,” whose melody changes color like a chameleon, resulting in a gentle, gratifying futuristic psalm.

Complex, fluid, and liberating, Family, Vol. 1 delivers emancipation from rational thought and provides rapport with the sublime.



Family, Vol. 1 Track Listing:

1. Cosmic Encounter
2. Ship Has Landed
3. Can You Hear Us?
4. The Owls
5. Icarus
6. Dream big, kid
7. Conduit
8. Intermission
9. Beyond the Sea
10. I Want to Believe
11. 10:00 P.M
12. Walk with me, boy
13. Thank you Mom and Dad, for everything

Run Time: 51:27
Release Date: March 16, 2024
Record Label: Independent