João Orecchia 

& Sicker Man


blank 040 / DL and Coloured Vinyl

João Orecchia & Sicker Man - live at Orange 'Ear


João Orecchia and Sicker Man have been working together since 2003, when they met through a classified ad in a Berlin newspaper. They immediately connected through improvisation and analogue electronics, forming a vast and intricate musical communication style.

They played clubs in the Berlin underground, such as NBI and Zentrale Randlage, as well as festivals like early editions of the Biesenthal Festival and Fusion Festival. Alongside individual tracks on Blank Records samplers in the 2000’s, the duo self released a number of recordings, which they distributed in local record stores through the city.

Soon after João moved to Johannesburg (SA) they recorded the album It’s only Wasteland, Mum at 7V Studio in Bockenem, Germany, which can be seen as the culmination of their early work. Using mainly acoustic instruments, Wasteland was a perfect example of improvised folktronica. Though their contact became more sporadic due to the distance, they have continued to meet up to improvise and record new material.

Their second full length album Pluton/Neptune was released on cassette by Miami based Other Electricities in 2020. These recordings are a nod back to the early days: ambient noise textures from a wild collection of sound sources. At the same time, it functions as a link to what would come next. By this time, João’s main instrument had become the modular synthesiser and Tobias started concentrating on the instrument that was his entry into the Berlin experimental scene: the electric cello.

Throughout the pandemic, separately from each other, they engaged more and more with artists like Ornette Coleman and Bennie Maupin, which presented as a lucky surprise in the recording sessions. João had been learning the bass clarinet and working to incorporate the instrument with his modular system. Tobias had specialised on multiphonic and glitch-orientated effect pedals with his electric cello. The next step for the duo became obvious when they met in 2022 to record their new album Parallax.

Parallax sounds like to two planets orbiting different galaxies, meeting at intervals to resonate and interchange. Two different points of view which make a unique and precise vision together.

“The music of the future is already developed, but the minds of the people on earth must be prepared to accept it.” (Sun Ra)

“We carry our homes within us which enables us to fly.” (John Cage) 


João Orecchia is an artist, composer and musician based in Johannesburg. Through experimentation and improvisation Orecchia explores sound’s connective capacities through both its physical properties and material preconscious properties, seeking a balance between computer technology, field recordings and traditional musical instruments. Currently focused on the combination of bass clarinet and modular synthesiser, Joãoʼs live performance spans composed works and improvised textural sound worlds.

Orecchia’s background as a self- taught musician is in improvised performance and composition for video art, film and theatre. His practice extends to public performance and intervention and the completion of a master ’s degree in Digital Arts brought a shift towards a more spatial and physical approach to composition, where sound, vibration, space, music and audience become connected in experience. Orecchia participates in gallery and museum exhibitions with installation, video, drawing and printmaking. Orecchia has received a South African Film & Television Award for sound design and has published in the Leonardo Music Journal and the Oxford Handbook of Sound Studies. Orecchia is a co-founder and co-director of Motherbox, together with artists Lindiwe Matshikiza and Mmakgosi Kgabi.

Sicker Man’s main instrument and focal point of his artistic creation is the electric cello, which he processes and modulates to transfer his artistic visions into reality. Since 2004 he has been composing music for film, theatre, radio plays, installations and performance art and releasing numerous albums of his various musical projects on his own label blankrecords. He has been collaborating with international artists and ensembles, as well as pursuing his own sonic explorations by experimenting with alternative performance spaces and different approaches to performance practice itself.

e.g. V/H/S/94 (US/2022), SEANCE (US/2021) OST via Lakeshore Records, Schauspielhaus Hamburg, Volkstheater Vienna, dOCUMENTA(13), Museo Reina Sofia Madrid, Imperial War Museum London, world premiere of Alvin Lucier ’s “1000 years of resonant joy” with The Ever Present Orchestra and Oren Ambarchi at Ambient Festival Cologne 2021, Composition and Production of various albums with alternative hip-hop artist Serengeti (US/Anticon), Fleeting Places, Fragments of Futures Past;


Joao Orecchia & Sicker Man

Dialog (Compilation) - (2021 / blankrecords) 

Pluton / Neptune - (2020 / Other Electricities) 

It’s only wasteland, Mum! - (2006 / blankrecords) 

Afterglow (Compilation) - (2005 / blankrecords) 

quality is punk (Compilation) - (2004 / blankrecords) 


Photo: Thomas Neukum


Cover Artwork: EEVIAC


Liner Notes by Thomas Khurana:


It’s been twenty years since Joao Orecchia and Sicker Man first met through an ad in the newspaper, requesting to meet or be met by someone. Now, just after our little earth has finished 20 rounds around the sun, their trajectories have aligned again and brought them back together in sound.

Sound is, as we all know, produced by oscillation, by the movement back and forth between two limiting points. Joao Orecchia and Sicker Man explore sound by deepening and multiplying the oscillation, doubling it up in a dual exposure.

They call the result a “parallax”. A parallax is the apparent displacement of an object against its background when seen from two different points of view. Stretch your arm in front of you, put up your finger, and then look at it first with the left, then with the right eye, and you’ll see the finger switch position against the background, jumping back and forth.

The interesting thing about the parallax is the fact that it not only uncovers that things look different from different points of view, that “I contain multitudes”. In a parallax, this very difference can become the basis for measuring the exact distance that separates you from the object. It is precisely through knowing the way in which some object refuses to be just in one place that you can determine exactly where it is. You cannot determine its position directly, if you just look straight at it from one point of view. The real, it seems, cannot be seen straight on, but only squinted at. You cannot reach it directly, but only by tiptoeing around – between bass clarinet and cello, lines and scapes, flow and stomp.

On this record, you can listen to the parallax of sound as the precise determination of what J. and S. aim at. We grasp what they are after through the very oscillation. There is “no arrival” here, only a meeting of intersecting lines of flight. A collision that makes you listen and wait – till we meet again.