Guitarist Tom Farrell and violinist Javier Orman of KOZM (fka Duo del Sol) have risen to the scene as one of the most formidable and unique music duos, recently described by LA Weekly as “avant-sonic acrobats” and “the most rock ’n’ roll pair of classically trained musicians working today” by 21st Century Musician.
Often compared to Rodrigo y Gabriela and Reinhardt and Grappelli for their virtuosic intensity, KOZM’s music is multi-textured, profound and riveting. While their compositions have been described as “elegant, delicate, cross-genre amalgamations” by the Michigan Daily, what’s made the group so unique is the colossal sound they generate from just a violin and a guitar.
What began in early 2011 with a casual jam session in Los Angeles, soon evolved when Orman and Farrell started to compose their own original music. Over the last few years, they have performed over 200 concerts in 18 states. The group released their first full-length album ‘hello Kaleidoscope’ in 2013 under their former name ‘Duo del Sol’ and were nominated that year for an Independent Music Award. In 2014, their single ‘La Ciudad’ was released along with a music video which became a selected feature in the Cine Las Americas Film Festival in Austin, TX. In 2015, they were contacted by AMC and featured in a national commercial for their arrangement of the “Walking Dead” television theme. They’ve also released two EP’s: Panic That Way (2015, live) and Macro (2016).
“The guitar in KOZM is the drum-set, bass, cello and mandolin,” says Tom. “I’m continuously discovering new sounds and new ways of approaching the guitar. This is my personal take on it.” Javier has a similar experience with the violin: “It’s my voice. I feel like I can speak through it, which makes playing it a really freeing experience.”
The powerful energy and the nostalgic tones in the music of KOZM reflect the personalities and tastes of its two members. Javier grew up in the artsy port-city of Montevideo, Uruguay, while Tom’s musical beginnings started in Chicago. “Because I didn’t have a real guitar, I made one out of a tennis racket and rubber bands and jammed along to my favorite songs. At the time, I thought my tennis racket guitar sounded pretty good.”
Together they found their voice in KOZM. Javier: “It's about creating, innovating, and having fun. Those things are on a different level.” “We’re community-made,” says Tom. “People from all backgrounds tell us how much our music has moved and changed them, and they feel they are a part of our group.”