One part reality plus two parts imagination equals I Know Nothing, the latest album from French composer Bernie Swell and his musical vision, Izdatso. Leveraging the same synth-pop sensibilities prevalent in Izdatso's first self-titled album, I Know Nothing is a bold and varied journey which starts from the cinematic d&b opener "I Love U", to the chiming guitars of "Precious Hell" before landing squarely into the 4AM world of "Canal St. Martin".
The songs on 'I Know Nothing' have depth and texture that can only be attributed to what Izdatso calls "pure digital mistakes". Holding true to Swell's musical (and perhaps personal) philosophy that when you destroy something, it often turns out quite beautiful, Izdatso uses a lot of sounds that are accidentally made by the computer. Bernie is also not afraid of experimenting. After hours of programming, Swell admits the creative process will start from chopping a track into little sections, and then looping the sections which will give birth to totally new track.
A few years ago, Izdatso was just Bernie Swell, a well-respected Paris FR-based musician and composer who wrote songs for local artists, which included Veronique Sanson. Today, Izdatso has emerged as an expanded collective and includes Swell (music, videos), his son Cali (music) and his wife Mino (graphics).
Swell's success in France has enabled him to work freely on his own musical endeavors, which can be drawn from the likes of Tricky, Wu-Tang Clan and Everything But The Girl. Izdatso are also drawn to other pioneers in their own fields, and often refers to nouveau cinema landmarks films created by David Lynch, Takeshi Kitano, Jim Jarmusch and artists such as Jasper Johns, Jan-Michel Basquiat, and Andy Warhol. Izdatso may be influenced by the 'greats', but the collective also finds there are great sources of inspiration in their daily family routines, which would include simple pleasures such as listening to music, painting and meditation.
While this routine may vary, the one thing that is a constant for Izdatso, is a response to the reality in Paris and the surrealism of the artist's inner imagination. The album title may claim that the artist knows nothing, but what Izdatso does know is that they simply make the kind of music which can be heard on the radio; music that is diverse, open and, most importantly, constantly changing.