Prodotto da Rugginenti Editore
2014 RUGGINENTI EDITORE s.r.l.
One4 J. Cage (1990) for cymbals and bass drum
VibraElufa K. Stockhausen (2003) for amplified vibraphone
Bär im Bau G. Giuliano (2014) for berimbau and computer tape
Maknongan G. Scelsi (1976) for marimba
Silver Streetcar for the Orchestra A. Lucier (1988) for amplified triangle
The King of Denmark M. Feldman (1965) for percussion
Around M F. Gemmo (2014) for amplified mbira
Endx4And G. Giuliano (2010) for percussion and computer tape
Quest S. Armaroli (2009) for snare drum alone
"Percussion music is revolution".
"La percussione è tutta apertura nel senso di una ecologia integrale dell'ascolto".
Sergio Armaroli (parafrasando John Cage)
FROM SOLO PERCUSSION TO LISTEN ECOLOGY
"No instrument, just sticks" | Steven Schick
In the context of avant-garde and experimental music, solo percussion represents a' sound environment' that is integrated with a renewed conception of musical thought. As the meeting place between disparate forms of musical experience, it is an 'ecological' listening experience. In the sound imagination, percussion inhabits a totalizing and global musical world in so far as it is present, in its forms and genres, in every musical culture and, together with the voice, is perhaps the first true manifestation of a fully expressed 'human musicality.
In this first discographic project of mine 'in solitude' I wished to develop a "cross-20th-century" listening experience around two complex works for percussion dedicated to me by Giuseppe Giuliano. I wanted this listening experience to incorporate the most important composers of the post-Webern and serial musical worlds (Stockhausen), the New York school (Cage, Feldman), Italian eccentricity (Scelsi) and over seas neo-minimalism and experimentalism (Lucier) and an anti-academic contemporary approach that is both italian and un-italian (Gemmo), concluding with a personal contribution that is 'almost in the margins', a work by a kind of 'minimal composer "alter ego" which defines the boundaries of the percussion-scape.
DALLA PERCUSSIONE SOLA ALL'ECOLOGIA DELL'ASCOLTO
La percussione sola rappresenta, nel panorama della musica d'avanguardia e sperimentale, un ambiente sonoro integrato in una concezione rinnovata del pensiero musicale; punto di incontro di esperienze musicali molto lontane tra di loro è una forma "ecologica" di ascolto.
La percussione occupa, nell'immaginario sonoro, un mondo musicale totalizzante e globale in quanto, nelle sue forme e nei suoi generi, essa è presente in ogni cultura musicale ed è forse la prima vera manifestazione di una "musicalità dell'uomo" pienamente espressa, unitamente alla voce.
In questo mio progetto discografico "in solitudine" ho pensato di sviluppare, attorno a due lavori complessi per percussione sola di Giuseppe Giuliano a me dedicati, un percorso d'ascolto "attraverso il Novecento" che tenesse conto dei principali compositori dell'area post-weberniana e seriale (Stockhausen), della scuola di New York (Cage, Feldman), dell'eccentricità italiana (Scelsi) e neo-minimalista e sperimentale d'oltreoceano (Lucier) e di una contemporaneità anti-accademica non propriamente italiana (Gemmo) concludendo con un contributo personale "quasi a margine" e sul limitare del paesaggio da parte di "un altro me stesso come compositore minimo".
from Percussive Notes, Vol.53, No.5 -November 2015
There are a number of words I always suspected I would never use to describe a solo percussion album. At the top of the list is intimate, but Solo by Italian percussionist
Sergio Armaroli, is indeed intimate. Much of this is due to the recording methods. The sound is particulary dry, as if you are sitting inches away from Armaroli as he plays for you in a practice
room (and it sounds as if Armaroli has spent a great deal of time in practice rooms). Every articulation of stick or mallet on instrument is clear and definite. Part of the
intimacy can be attributed to the works selected for the album. Rarely bombastic, often delicate, there were times that the dynamic was so faithfully captured that I thought the
album had stopped playing. Another word I might shy away from is eclectic. There are such a wide variety of instrumentation. There are works dating back to Feldman's "The King of
Denmark" from 1965 to as recent as "Around M" by Gemmo written in 2014, which is also the year this CD was released. No instrument is apparently off limits, either. The requisite snare drum and
marimba solos are present (albeit, they are not what you'd typically expect). But beyond that, the gamut is run from "Silver Streetcar for the Orchestra" (A.Lucier, 1988) for amplified triangle
to a piece for berimbau and computer tape ("Bar im Bau"; G.Giuliano, 2014). If I'm being honest, another word I might seldom use to describe a solo percussion album is listenable.
However, Solo is very listenable. This doesn't mean that there isn't some meat to it; there are pieces by John Cage and Karl Stockhausen, and the others are certainly not forgettable or
saccharine. But Armaroli has put together a series of works that are not only different from each other, but also complementary. The order in which the pieces were placed may have as much to do
with this as the actual selection of music. Either way, it was not lost on me that the album has a distinct flow that makes it even more listenable. I probably would have overlooked this album
normally. Recordings of solo percussion performance are not what I generally reach for, but I'm glad I came across this one. It is in so many ways completely unexpected. (In fact, I might
normally dread listening to any album featuring a 9 -minute work for amplified triangle! But, now I find myself mesmerized by it.) This is an album that you will definitely want to invest your
time and money into. I highly recommend Solo for anyone wanting something out of the ordinary as well as anyone wanting to be exposed to phenomenal, top-notch