Volcano Radar

Julia Miller - guitarist & Elbio Barilari - multi-instrumentalist

Uruguayan born Elbio Barilari, composer, writer and multi-instrumentalist, moved to Chicago in 1998. He is a professor of Jazz History and Latin American Music at UIC, he hosts the internationally syndicated Latin American music radio show “Fiesta”, on WFMT 98.7 and he is Co-Director of the Chicago Latino Music Festival. Barilari has an intense activity both as a classical composer and as a jazz musician.


His classical pieces have been commissioned and performed by orchestras such as Grant Park Festival, Ravinia Festival, Chicago Sinfonietta, Chicago Arts Orchestra, Avalon String Quartet, Fulcrum Point, Kaia String Quartet, nationally and internationally.


In the jazz field, he has premiered five extended comissioned compositions: “Gondwana Suite” at Millennium Park with Paquito D’Rivera’s United Nations Orchestra; “Lincolniana,” commissioned (Ravinia Festival for President Lincoln’s bicentennial and featuring Orbert Davis); “Sounds of Hope,” (The Morse Theater for President Obama’s first inauguration); “Flags from Ashes," (WFMT for the 10th anniversary of September 11th); and “Diasporas," (The Cohn Foundation to celebrate Culture and Diversity).

Julia A. Miller is a guitarist, composer, improviser, sound artist, visual artist, curator and educator. Julia specializes in synthesized electric guitar, and co-leads the band Volcano Radar, along with Elbio Barilari. Volcano Radar’s first two records, “Refutation of Time” and “Electro Parables”, were also released on Pan Y Rosas. Julia received a DMA in composition from Northwestern University in 2005.


Julia was the head of the Guitar Department at the Music Institute of Chicago for more than two decades and is the President & CEO at Delmark Records. She has managed historical recording technology as a professor of Sound at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where she has taught since 2003.  In 2012, Julia was a recipient of the prestigious Helen and Tim Coburn Meier Foundation Award for established artists for her work with site-specific improvised opera. Julia was the first finalist recognized for electronic music in the Gaudeamus Prize.



  • “Tranströmer’s Transmutations,” is a poem from the collection "a fix of ink," published by Finishing Line Press. The lovers in this poem are a sorceress and a knight from medieval times who were burnt on the scaffolds, and they meet in the virtual realms of abstract meadows--their souls remain floating across the ages.
  • "Fluidity" is this short experimental film made by Ben Jones and Anna Burnett from Sunderland University, Newcastle, UK. The majority of the shots were achieved with the use of a fish tank, water, and food coloring. Images then flow in an ethreal space, floating, emerging, disintegrating, bursting, and melting. There is ice ad there is fire, water, and smoke, as byproducts almost.
  • Barilari’s piece, entitled "Threshold of Memories," plays with sonic nuances using electronic processing of my voice, except for the cornet’s solo and the bass line. He created 5 tracks of my audio, each one more intensively altered than the one preceding. 
  • My voice was originally recorded at home by Federico Ramos. What your ears might tell you sound like synthesizers, it's still, my voice reading my own poetry with my rhythm and my particular vocal color. Elbio Barilari composed this fantastic piece within a week.
  • Julia Miller recorded, mixed and mastered at VR, their studio in Chicago.



I seek to prove that even different artistic forms may merge symbiotically and in precise synergy, and that their creative energy be enabled to manifest in the phenomena that we feel in our bodies, in their reaction to experience. Poetry, Music, and Video, trans-mutating into our lives, connnecting us. 

I call this concept Artistic Crosspollinations. 

“Tranströmer’s Transmutations,” is evidence of ONE.



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Cecilia Martinez-Gil

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