(Percaso)

In little more than 33 minutes, Swiss reedman and composer Gallio managed to musically transpose 92 questions, those published in Fluxus artist Robert Filliou’s book “Ample food for stupid thought” (dating from 1965). This obviously means that the pieces are extremely short – one-liners, like in the written version – but their brevity is exactly what exalts the perfection of the concept. In fact, I don’t hesitate in calling this one of the best albums of 2008 – a strong, concise record that must be carefully considered and savoured, and that will be admired by many different specimens of genre lover, including those who are well acquainted with RIO and posthumous derivations. The players sustain the work of a technically impeccable soprano, Sylvia Nopper, who performs a basic role – giving voice to those “stupid thoughts” and rendering them marvellous. The rest of the small (tiny?) chamber ensemble that’s Mösiöblö is tightly rehearsed and absolutely surefooted: guitarist Marino Pliakas, clarinettist Thomas Eckert and the leader on saxophone manage to enshrine the pure lyricism of scores that are redemptive of all the hopeless noodling that often I’m forced to listen to, in the name of nondescript freedom. Here the audience can appreciate the fascination of the rule instead: every sound falls precisely where it should, without foppery or affectation – just sheer clarity of intent, setting the music at heights where artistry can’t possibly be mystified. Other participants include Peter Schärli, Bernhard Bamert, Dominique Girod, Martin Lorenz, Ernst Thoma. High recommendations are reserved for this surprisingly great CD.

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