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VOLT

Progressive Electronic • United Kingdom


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VoLt picture
VoLt biography
Founded in the UK in 2003

VoLt is the UK duo Michael Shipway (who released four solo albums between 1992 and 2011) and Steve Smith (Steve Smith And The Tylas Cyndrome and a duo with Robin Banks). A long time ago they met for the first time and decided to write songs together and record them. So a pop/rock band called Hi-Fi was born. Along with all of this came a desire to explore the world of sampling and synthesized sound. These instruments were introduced into the band and also spawned the classic sampling duo A.I. or Artificial Intelligence (that still exists to this day). Michael then sent a demo of some songs he had done in the electronic music genre to a record label called Surreal to real. They liked it and three albums were produced.

It was during a period after this, when Michael was striving to write his fourth album and Steve Smith was away doing other band projects. It occurred to Michael that they had never actually tried to play music live and spontaneous with no prior arranging. Everything had always been carefully prepared and recorded in computers and edited to achieve the required result. So both Mike and Steve agreed it would be a good idea to try some sessions playing live in the studio with no pre-planned ideas, except for some programmed sequencers. So what was to become their debut album entitled The Far Canal was recorded in three sessions, and VoLt came into being. The 3 tracks were performed live by VoLt in concert and in the studio, the only preparation being the programming of sounds and sequences.

The result is wonderful electronic music, from soaring syntheiszer strings and spacey sounds effects to majestic Mellotron choirs and violins, and pulsating sequencers. Especially Part Three (24.31) is the realm of Berlin School inspired cosmic music with lots of beautiful sound effects. Then hypnotizing synthesizers join, halfway a slow beat and soft synthesizer flights, Kitaro comes to my mind. Gradually the atmosphere becomes more lush, topped with propulsive sequencers and pitchbend driven synthesizer runs, simply wonderful. In the end a mellow atmosphere with again interesting sound effects and soaring synthesizers.

During the years VoLt released a serie of albums, from the second album named Star Compass (2004) to the latest entitled A Day Without Yesterday, from 2016.

See also: HERE

Bio by TenYearsAfter (partly taken fr...
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VOLT discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

VOLT top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.91 | 2 ratings
The Far Canal
2003
0.00 | 0 ratings
Star Compass
2004
3.00 | 3 ratings
Through The Rings
2005
0.00 | 0 ratings
Nucleosynthesis
2007
0.00 | 0 ratings
Circuits
2012
2.00 | 1 ratings
Particles
2013
3.95 | 2 ratings
A Day Without Yesterday
2016

VOLT Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

0.00 | 0 ratings
HjVi
2008

VOLT Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

VOLT Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

VOLT Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

VOLT Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 A Day Without Yesterday by VOLT album cover Studio Album, 2016
3.95 | 2 ratings

BUY
A Day Without Yesterday
VoLt Progressive Electronic

Review by Quinino

4 stars Wonderful surprise, I must say - not this is their first release, I can count at least 6 former albums as a duo, but it's my unexpectedly discovery of their music.

Great music it is, and this coming from a not usual fan of Electronic, old or new. But these two guys, let me add both not being in their younger age anymore, achieve to blend tradition with modernity as only seasoned musicians are able to. Expect lots of synths, of course, that's the main dish, but also guitar, the whole soaked with plenty of rhythm and electronic sounds.

Want to take a taste - just go to bandcamp and listen to this or other older recordings, available there for streaming or buying.

 The Far Canal by VOLT album cover Studio Album, 2003
2.91 | 2 ratings

BUY
The Far Canal
VoLt Progressive Electronic

Review by TenYearsAfter

3 stars VoLt is the UK duo Michael Shipway (who released four solo albums between 1992 and 2011) and Steve Smith (Steve Smith And The Tylas Cyndrome and a duo with Robin Banks). A long time ago they met for the first time and decided to write songs together and record them. So a pop/rock band called Hi-Fi was born. Along with all of this came a desire to explore the world of sampling and synthesized sound. These instruments were introduced into the band and also spawned the classic sampling duo A.I. or Artificial Intelligence (that still exists to this day). Michael then sent a demo of some songs he had done in the electronic music genre to a record label called Surreal to real. Lo and behold they liked it and three albums were produced. It was during a period after this, when Michael was striving to write his fourth album and Steve Smith was away doing other band projects. It occurred to Michael that they had never actually tried to play music live and spontaneous with no prior arranging. Everything had always been carefully prepared and recorded in computers and edited to achieve the required result. So both Mike and Steve agreed it would be a good idea to try some sessions playing live in the studio with no pre-planned ideas, except for some programmed sequencers. So what was to become their debut album entitled The Far Canal was recorded in three sessions, and VoLt came into being. The 3 tracks contained here were performed live by VoLt in concert and in the studio, the only preparation being the programming of sounds and sequences.

1. Part One (14:36)

The intro delivers sound effects, followed by soaring synthesizer strings and majestic Mellotron choir drops. Then catchy sequencers and layers of synthesizers in a mid-tempo, culminating in a long and wonderful part featuring an awesome Mellotron violin sound. The final section is dreamy with soaring synthesizers and the sound of the Mellotron female choir section.

2. Part Two (21:13) The atmosphere in this part refers the most to the 'outer space' title The Far Canal: after a very long intro with a typical EM spacey climate, halfway a slow beat and synthesizers with a phasing sound, this is wonderful ambient music.

3. Part Three (24:31)

This is the realm of cosmic music with lots of beautiful sound effects. Then hypnotizing synthesizers join, halfway a slow beat and soft synthesizer flights, Japanese EM musician Kitaro comes to my mind. Gradually the atmosphere becomes more lush, topped with propulsive sequencers and pitchbend driven synthesizer runs, simply wonderful. In the end a mellow atmosphere with again interesting sound effects and soaring synthesizers.

A very pleasant debut CD, meanwhile VoLt have released a serie of albums between 2003 and 2013 (the lastest is entitled Particles).

Thanks to EManiac Paul Rijkens.

 Through The Rings by VOLT album cover Studio Album, 2005
3.00 | 3 ratings

BUY
Through The Rings
VoLt Progressive Electronic

Review by admireArt
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Dream on!

Coming from UK, Michael Shipway and Steve Smith conform VOLT, this 2005 "Through The Rings", as far as this prog-archive goes is their 3th release.

Dreamy and intelligent as in Tangerine Dream's 70s era, mild as in "close to corny" Tangerine Dream's 80s one and beyond being perfectly studio recorded and offering a clean cut performance too close to commercial "new age" music and well the T.D.'s 2000s cover art like, does not help much either.

And to force things a bit, it also offers some kind of "tribute" to Michael Cretu's 80s self styled, ENIGMA project, which the 80s/90/s TDs also did (shamelessly).

Impersonal and unoriginal at close range, for those who still crave for versions of the same old prog-electronic scene again and again.

Nicely performed, some very attractive ambiences here and there, some catchy moments to remember but too "new agy, twinkly crystalline and TD like " for my taste.

***3 PA stars tops.

Thanks to philippe for the artist addition. and to Quinino (w/ TenYearsAfter) for the last updates

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