UNQUESTIONABLE ANSWERS is pervaded by a chorale played by strings, which expands and contracts. Some tinkling glockenspiels and heavily filtered white noise are added in the highest part of the spectrum. The elaboration of the parts generates tensive crescendos which culminate in explosions. The decays of the blasts are characterized by arpeggi of synthesized plucks, in stochastic major/minor chords. All the music materials are based on the tone row discovered by Anton Webern in his unfinished opus 32. The title is a reversed quotation of Unanswered Question by Charles Ives. In my composition I testify the complete overturning of the meaning of Ives’ masterpiece. The contemporary human being can not ask questions, can not search for answers, can not pursue a higher meaning and can not seek for a teleological meaning of the existence. The real questions are banned. The answers are pre-established, inculcated in the masses and in every human being since its conception. While incapable of questioning, the contemporary human being must follow ready-made answers, with operose passiveness, as imposed by the contemporary society. We are running frantically in order to stay still while the universe and the immutable celestial stars evolve. The piece takes inspiration from, and thus is dedicated to, Aldous Huxley (for his Brave New World Revisited) and to Giorgio Agamben (for his Homo Sacer).
ATTRAVERSO (THROUGHOUT) Luigi Russolo’s writings, paintings and thoughts about the futuristic orchestra gave birth to the modern poetics of composition. The noise of urbanized cities, of technology, and also of weapons, is integrated in the so-called “classical” music. Everything is noise, or the silence is noise… the boundaries between organized sound and noise are overcome. From a philosophical perspective, randomness (indetermination) is absolute, and the idea itself is overcome by the concept of integration of a deterministic randomness, or by a rational indetermination. My sound experimentations begun with a survey on noise: random noise, pseudo-random noise (as generated by computers), or “unrepeating random noise”, in which all samples are unique. I generated one second of an unrepeating random noise at 48KHz, which I used as a ground for the ideas of this composition. It is an interesting concept, since the randomness of the samples following the first sample decreases with the number of samples generated, until the last one which is necessary. I downsampled this second of generated unrepeating noise, finding a tone row, and I evaluated the potential of the pitch classes. After deciding the structure of the piece and some tone colors, I composed freely. Eventually I used some previous samples of mine which fitted with the overall sound/noise. The first part is sidereal. A few kinds of glockenspiels are generated from the noise passing throughout some filters with self-resonance and resonators. The crescendi are made by granular delays. At minute 3 there are some stable pitches made with a reversed reverbered granular harp, with stretched waveforms. Over this, around 4 minutes and 30 seconds there is chorale played by a string orchestra, made upon the tone-row of the previous glockenspiels and resonators. Around minute 8 there is an arpeggiator on randomized minor chords and a random drum. This piece is a tribute to the composer from Portogruaro, to his coherence, to his vitality and dynamism, to his theories and artistic output, which, throughout times, still inspires us.
Finalmente Alighieri is the first track of the Trittico Dante, a set of three pieces which won the international competition made by SIMC (Italian Society for Contemporary Music) held in 2021 to celebrate the anniversary of Dante Alighieri. Finalmente Alighieri! is in three sections. In the first part, the verses are gradually creating a choir based on the time-stretch of the vowels of the words. The middle section is dramatic. Verses and words are fragmented, the hums are scattering, the transients of the words are predominant, voices are superimposing. The parts are made with granular synthesis and with stochastic processes. The high luminous pitches and the low dark booms are generated by the transposition and re-enveloping of the previous materials. In the final part, the fragments and hums are gradually extinguished, and the corale of the beginning in back. There are no words, but the main pitches of the voice are resonating in quasi-sinusoidal waveforms. Metaphorically, it is evoked the celestial harmony and the convergence of the universe into pure energy.
I composed Dante-Reset during the COVID-19 pandemic, in the spring of 2021. I selected some verses from the Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri, to celebrate the 700 anniversary of his death. The Italian violinist Emy Bernecoli performed the vocals. All the samples then are generated from the electronic elaboration of her voice. The composition was born out of the disillusion that a new and better society would be born. The painting used in the cover is ESPLOSIONE, oil on canvas, by Emidio Bernecoli (www.emidiobernecoli.it)
Dante-Reset nasce nella primavera del 2021, mentre l’epidemia di COVID-19 devastava il mondo e l’Italia. Ho utilizzato alcuni versi tratti dalla Divina Commedia di Dante Alighieri, in occasione delle celebrazioni del 700 anno dalla sua morte. La violinista italiana Emy Bernecoli ha recitato i versi, tutti i suoni si basano sull’elaborazione elettronica dei campioni vocali. Il pezzo nasce dalla disillusione sulla nascita di una nuova e migliore società. Il quadro nell’immagine di copertina è ESPLOSIONE, olio su tela, di Emidio Bernecoli (www.emidiobernecoli.it)
I composed the first version of Supercollider in the winter of 2014, in one night. I remember I used in an unconventional mode the distortion (well abused) and the limiter… instead of using faders I automated a limiter on the single tracks. The track was then sitting on my hard drive, waiting to be polished. This autumn I decided to re-record and re-program all the synths, trying to retain the aggressive unpolished sound I had in the first version. I hope you will enjoy!
Elia (aka Elijax)
Ho composto la prima versione di Supercollider nell’inverno del 2014, in una notte. Ricordo di aver usato in maniera non convenzionale distorsori (meglio dire: abusato…) e i limitatori, questi ultimi utilizzati al posto dei volumi del mixer. La traccia è poi rimasta nel mio disco fisso per alcuni anni, in attesa di essere rifinita. Durante questo ultimo autunno ho deciso di registrarla da capo, cercando di mantenere l’aggressività della prima versione. Spero vi piacerà.
I composed Ghosts and Lizards using a “found sound” in my sample library, which I recorded randomly a few years ago. It is a sort of a techno track, in which, towards the end, I develop a stochastic rhythm of percussions. After working on the piece, I found some of the music scary, and thought of the things that could possibly scare me the most (idiosyncrasy), or scare the less… at the end is the same.
Elia (aka Elijax)
Ho composto Ghosts and Lizards basandomi su un vecchio campione, una sorta di suono ritrovato, che avevo registrato alcuni anni fa. È una traccia techno, verso la fine sviluppo dei ritmi stocastici nelle percussioni. Fantasmi e lucertole che possono spaventare… o possono attrarre: alcune idiosincrasie in un titolo che ha un significato particolare.Ho voluto poi comporre dei brani che offrissero una duplice modalità di ascolto: distratto, come avviene per la musica di sottofondo, oppure attento e concentrato, alla ricerca di similarità nelle melodie e nei ritmi.
With Coalescence I wanted to avoid loops and repetitions. I envisioned a continuous variation, without any theme or a specific rhythm. This approach gave birth to similar pieces, but of different duration and contents, which I included in a unique project. The numerical part of the titles reports the duration in seconds, and this unitary project could be listened to as a single, or as a concept album.
I wanted to allow for a double listening mode: focused, as a pure listening experience, or distracted, as ambient music. All the pieces have a common timbre, which is relaxed and dreamy.
I thought of Coalescence as a fitting title, since it represents all the sound objects I used that gradually attract each other, as atoms in the interstellar space, to give life to new stars. In all the randomness involved in this process, the human mind tries to find patterns of repetitions, which, however, are not present in the composition as designed.
You are welcome to listen to Coalescence as you prefer: randomly, following the recording order, or here and there… or nothing at all.
I hope this music will be source of inspiration, relax, deep concentration and detailed vision.
Elia (aka Elijax)
Con Coalescence ho voluto evitare i loop e le ripetizioni, le quali non si trovano né nelle parti melodiche, né nei ritmi, né nella strutturazione della forma. Ho immaginato una variazione continua, senza che vi fosse un tema o un ritmo di lunghezza predefinita e immediatamente delimitabile. Questo procedimento ha dato vita a brani simili, ma di durata e contenuti diversi che ho deciso di includere in un progetto unitario, accomunato dalla scelta dei timbri.
Ho voluto poi comporre dei brani che offrissero una duplice modalità di ascolto: distratto, come avviene per la musica di sottofondo, oppure attento e concentrato, alla ricerca di similarità nelle melodie e nei ritmi.
I brani hanno un timbro unitario che è rilassato, non aggressivo: un pacato eloquio che alterna momenti rarefatti a quelli più densi.
L’immagine che da il titolo e che la musica cerca di evocare è quella della coalescenza: oggetti sonori che, come atomi in una nube di gas siderale, gradualmente si attraggono fino a dare vita a galassie e a nuove stelle, le quali, esaurito il proprio ciclo vitale, si spengono.
L’ascoltatore è dunque invitato a fruire di questi brani come preferisce: in ordine casuale, in modo frammentario, oppure continuativo e con attenzione. Spero che questa mia musica sarà fonte di tranquillità e di ispirazione, di visione complessiva e nel contempo particolareggiata.
Plucks, EDM genre, is based on a catchy electronic pluck. Down to the Skyline mixes the electronic and the classical genres, in a costant rhythmic crescendo. Tribal Zone is an aggressive piece where the bass fights against drums and synths. Driver’s Vision evokes the landscapes of a car journey. Main influences from Autechre, Aphex Twin, Deadmau5, Vangelis and Stravinsky.