Greyscale’s most personal release and perhaps the most important for label owner grad_u aka Aleksandr Martinkevič. Earlier this year, Alex was diagnosed with cancer. Certainly, a horrible thing to hear and there has definitely been some low moments in certain stages of the journey. At just 36 years old, many of us are shocked that such a young person can develop cancer. After some research, he found out that younger and younger people are randomly getting cancer studies to show. An alarming trend to learn about. However, there has also been a lot of other learning and different new levels of appreciation for the simple things in life as a new higher level of inspiration in making music has manifested. And this new release encapsulates that. Alex has also felt a duty to make things better for others. Focusing on what can be improved as he wants to highlight research, treatment and the overall communication of this disease to more people in the electronic music scene. Part of the proceeds from this new album will be donated to the National Cancer Institute in his homeland of Lithuania. Alex wants everyone to know that catching these signs early and getting regular checkups are your best chance of beating cancer. Thankfully Alex did this also and his treatments have gone well. Alex plans still stay steadfast with his label and his life. Simplifying things with the love from his family and friends, focusing on his hobbies along with making sure he makes his health his #1 personal priority.
The name for this full-length release is titled ‘T2NO‘. grad_u‘s most introspective work yet features 8 emotional tracks overall. The honesty expressed in this album is blunt and to the point. These tracks take you on an audio journey through grad_u as he expresses his feelings thru the entire process in each stage.
Beginning with two wonderful ambient tracks named ‘Genetic Mutation‘ & ‘Carcinogen‘. In the opener, Chords rain over you as a beautiful ambient melody peeks out underneath it followed by a more stark and hazy field of interference. From the gentle opener to the more tension-filled follower, the personal journey of grad_u is developing before your ears. The b-side of ‘Neoplasm‘ is a bit more sombre but also has a ray of light in it. Introspective as it can get, this is a true journey through an uncertain future. ‘MRI scan‘ needs no explanation…
The second half of the album begins the understanding of what grad_u was going thru. ‘Malignant Transformation‘ gives off that feeling of the human body working thru science. Fight or flight becomes the theme for this track. ‘Adenocarcinoma‘ almost gives off the sound of cells rebuilding themselves. Sci-fi meets real life in this epic battle. ‘Resection‘ continues this scientific-sounding reflection on the body healing with sounds of movement and time. As if the body is working itself out. Lastly and triumphantly comes the closing track ‘Waking up to a New Life‘…
The emotional journey of this album isn’t for the faint of heart. It leaves nothing to the imagination. It works thru all the emotions that can come with such and life-changing event like having cancer. We want to thank grad_u for sharing his story with us. This story can happen to anyone…
“I would like to take this opportunity to express my great gratitude to doctors A. Dulskas, G. Jurevičienė, V. Sidorov and all staff in Abdominal Surgery and Oncology Department at NCI. Thank you for your expert care and for saving my life.
Also, big big thank you to my family and closest friends for all their love and support during this difficult period of time and for always being there for me.”– Aleksandr Martinkevič
Special thanks to the Lithuanian Council for Culture, associations AGATA and LATGA for support of this special project.
Part of the proceeds from the album will be donated to National Cancer Institute, Lithuania.
Written & produced by Aleksandr Martinkevič
Mastered by Rafael Anton Irisarri at Black Knoll, NY
Photography by Rima Prusakova
Layout design by Artūras Kirslys
Write-up by Tim Humphrey
Releases January 26, 2022
Format: Vinyl, CD, digital
feeder sound 197 mixed by grad_u in 2019 explores the unique territory of dub techno unfolding as a deeply soothing recording that includes tracks signed by artists like Faded, Heavenchord, Sraunus, Frankie Deep, Delano Smith & Traumer, Vril, Yan Cook and Janeret amongst others. The mix flows with elegance, transitioning from melodic and chilled compositions to more uplifting cuts while keeping a steady rhythm. Closing, you can hear “Jacob’s Dream”, a spacious ambient production from “Dream Observer EP” released by the artist with Echo Echo earlier this year.