SOS by VerdCel.
Creating in pandemic times or how experiencing the health crisis is transformed into creative work.
We are starting a new quarantine. But in this case, it's 40 days of expansion, not lockdown. It's time to open windows, to release, to relate, to feel close. We want to make possible the edition in Book-CD format of the SOS project. Since the beginning of the lockdown, VerdCel has been creating and disseminating different tracks that have given shape to a new work. We now have five songs with video; you can listen to them below. The work will have a total of 13 songs and a 65-page picture book.
SOS is the result of determined dedication. It's a basically intuitive urgent project that has been growing day by day.
The project has developed through a completely different creation process, based on compulsory physical isolation, which we have overcome thanks to a lot of connection and especially a greater dose of communication, and with certain technical shortcomings that we have tried to gradually improve: maximizing existing resources, incorporating new people into the team, and learning as much as we could. Everything aimed to do it with the highest possible quality and with all the dignity we could muster. Together with an atypical conception of the work comes an atypical release too, at least the first part of this work, from a more immediate and online perspective. We shared each song + video the moment they were ready. And now we are kicking off this participation process, this crowdfunding campaign, to make possible its physical and definitive format.
The purpose of the first phase (now that this word has taken a new dimension in our lives :P), more immediate and online, has been to share the ride with you and enjoy your company in this pandemic and during the lockdown, by your watching and listening to the videos and released songs. We have done our best to share our work: making songs, drawings, videos. Focusing all our senses on what we were experiencing and creating, building something out of the results. And in this sense now, in this new and second phase, you can fully engage and become part of the project, to materialize the Book-CD format and end the open processes.
What do we have to offer? What will the work involve?
First of all the work will contain all the tracks from the album, 13 songs.
The format of this work will be that of Book-CD, 17x24 cm (same format as the last 'Bifocal' and 'De plantes, talaies i cims'), with 65 pages in color, with all the drawings, texts of the project, the lyrics and the CD with the songs.
The songs that were originally released will be remixed and mastered in studios with more sophisticated devices to improve and unify the sound.
There are different rewards.
To the new Book-CD format of SOS you can add:
A Print of the drawings in DinA3 format (29.7 x 42cm). You can choose from all the drawings in the book (examples are shown throughout this text).
The previous work Bifocal with Book and double CD.
The 3 live records by VerdCel ( Cunetes, Ovidi and Poetes).
All the quadryptic albums of the elements in Book-CD formats ( Saurí, Argilaga, De plantes and Bifocal).
The 7 studio records ( PaísViatge, Sàmara, Petjades, Saurí, Argilaga, De plantes and Bifocal).
The complete discography.
A day in the Baix Montseny ( Lunch and songs included).
The concerts at your place or for entities.
In all the rewards you will have our thank you for participating.
Where will the money raised go?
After deducting the expenses (about 8-10%) the remaining amount will go entirely to the manufacture and shipment. The production cost is advanced by VerdCel, but all the money that exceeds the amount of 3500€ will be energy in the form of resources that will help us recover, especially with the days approaching for culture (unfortunately among others).
That is, by participating in this crowdfunding, you will make the project a reality and you will support VerdCel in these times of uncertainty.
What schedule have we planned?
So far, in early June, we have released 5 songs with video. The rest of the songs to complete the album (13) are still in production process. We will remix and master the first tracks, finalize and model the book, and send to manufacture, as well as the CD and the prints.
We estimate that in July we will be able to send the digital format of the work to all the verkami collaborators involved, and in August the physical format in Book-CD format, prints, etc will be ready. We will do our best to accomplish this. We consider this schedule as reasonable but, of course, if we have it before, we will send it to you sooner than later.
What topics are covered in the work?
The songs, drawings, videos and texts deal with various topics related to what we have experienced, from different areas and perspectives. Both a realistic vision and a critical view (also self-critical) are present throughout the work, both when deeping into the present lived and the recent past in society, as well as the introspection to base ourselves from the epicenter of this experience and reflect more faithfully these exceptional facts.
Emotions and very harsh and tragic feelings are present, but also hope and a varnish of positivism completely permeates the work in its most enlightened parts. The enthusiasm is always understood as the fruit of work and responsibility when facing this as individuals and collectively.
The Book-CD includes an analysis of the epidemic with causes and consequences, it is the experience of confinement (surviving it, taking advantage of it, the shortcomings, the opportunities), the management and communication of governments and the media; there are deep reflections on the economic system and our mistreating the planet, the supposed "normality", the necessary degrowth and the fundamental role of farming and responsible consumption; the essential work of health workers (the frantic day to day they have lived, the dangers experienced and the doubts generated), the evidence of the dismantling of the health system and social services (the effect of budget cuts), the indecent treatment we have with elderly people; the double suffering of death during this period, where there is also a place for optimism product of the fight of people and the basic services that help to overcome this nightmare.
How SOS started and what it has become.
On the weekend of March 13-15, when it was not yet announced what was coming but we all had a hunch, the first verses and the first notes of this new adventure began to be written. We didn’t know where all this would take us, but the effort and enthusiasm has enabled the building of a project from the distance; with certain shortcomings and an adverse emotional climate.
And it has been thanks to the strong commitment by all the participants, a family that has been growing slowly together as the project evolved. First, three songs where there was the initial spark with ‘Els temps dels arbres’ and ‘La boira’, and as weeks went by another new triad of pieces emerged. From that moment on, some light was shed on what was ahead, and the pending issues to deal with marked a path beyond the EP or small disc format, towards an LP, with two more blocks of songs. And now what we are considering is to crystallize the work done in this format of Book-CD with drawings by Daniel Olmo, the complete album with the 13 songs, the lyrics, parallel texts of each song and the whole project ( creating in pandemic times or how experiencing the health crisis is transformed into creative work).
SOS. The team:
Alfons Olmo (songwriting, texts, management and artistic production), Toni Medialdea (musical production), Daniel Olmo (drawings and design), Laura Vaughan (video realization), Cristian Pallejà (mixes), Pep Roig (mastering), Marcel Ferrer, Raül Lorenzo and Edu González (musicians), Alaitz Zalbidea (linguistic check), Dídac Rocher (voice-over and collaboration) and other invited voices that will accompany us, such as Rusó Sala or Paula Berenguer.
VerdCel is a multifaceted and contemporary singer-songwriter project. They have released more than ten albums (the eighth studio album in 2020), but also several books - comics, illustrated poetry - and audiovisual works - short films, videoclips, live performances or documentaries.
They have been on stage for over seventeen years, more than fifteen different live performances, and have been awarded several musical prizes for their energetic and careful live performances, as well as two Ovidi Montllor awards for their records.