For musicians with backgrounds in the classical and pop worlds, pianist Rasa Daukus and drummer/percussionist Will Larsen display an impressive commitment to and mastery of improvisation. The pair, who makes up Melbourne, Australia, duo Tess Said So, have just released their second album, the wonderfully titled Scramble + Fate (Preserved Sound). While they do play recognisable song structures, some of which bear lovely melodies, they utilise an array of organic and electronic sounds to create tonal ambience that underlines the mood of each piece. From the sound of kalimba played inside a piano to subtle electronic drones, from the intimacy of triangles, tambourines and shakers to the grandeur of tubular bells, Daukus and Larsen craft soundscapes that resonate on a primal level, linking ancient and futurist aesthetic in often-mesmerising ways. The wistful, gemlike "So Long, Perfect", included here, finds Daukus' piano waltzing with Larsen's chiming glockenspiel, crafting an achingly beautiful, crystalline portrait of sublime melancholy.
From JAZZIZ Magazine, Fall 2016 issue.