(Sirr)

The Imperial Grand Marimba is a five-octave monster that percussionist and composer Pedro Carneiro uses as his main expressive means. The artistic intention of “Improbable transgressions” is pretty easy to decode, but also quite demanding for the listeners, articulated as it is over two long CDs that could probably be too much to swallow in a single session without suffering a few cases of dwindling attention, unless you’re properly trained. In fact, Carneiro recorded nine solo improvisations, using the many techniques at his disposal to show every nuance, noise, resonance and protruberance to conjure up fascinating dissonant networks and pronounced rarefactions. He then asked nine contemporary sound manglers (Convolution Brothers, Chris Brown, Ivan Franco, Brandon Labelle, Stephan Mathieu, João Pedro Oliveira, André Sier, Christian Vogel and Ralf Wehowsky) to “hack” his instantaneous compositions. The results born from these processes sound pretty serious (not that one would ever dare to think differently) yet we should stress once again that this music should be enjoyed in small doses, because both PC’s original improvisations and their reworkings need intense concentration to truly penetrate their significance. Obliqueness, correspondence of intents, disintegrating relations and unrecognizable projections are at the basis of sound fields that allude to many different reality modifications. On the one hand, Carneiro maintains the physical structures of his playing in obvious evidence, given also the absence of any overdub or edit; contrariwise, several of the “hackers” determine a thorough disembodiment of his tones, most notably Convolution Brothers, Wehowsky and Mathieu. And, naturally, it was meant that way – or was it? All in all, this is a conceptually important, though not steadfastly ear-pleasing release, certainly a different step in Sirr’s usual path.

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