Ennio Mazzon’s music combines field recordings with extensive computer-based shaping and editing. New release “CeriseIcicles”, his first to appear since he relocated from his native Italy to Canada, falls somewhere between the more obvious presentation of found sounds heard on 2010’s “Celadon” and the more aggressive treatments and manipulations of last year’s “Xuan”. The single twenty-minute piece was created by feeding pop song material through a custom audiovisual platform called ARTS-LOI until their original structures and tonalities were no longer discernible, the processing improvised live over several takes and then edited together. The system also generates live visuals derived from photographs taken in the Shetland Islands.
The piece is just about long enough to catch a sense of modulation between an interior world of thoughts and an exterior world of things, though there’s no direct correlation between the type of material being presented and the affective space being implied. Snatches of recorded street conversation and traffic noise point to an exterior, while quieter moments of footsteps and doors shutting suggest a private inner universe; likewise, digital noise and tones (presumably the shattered pop music) seem muted, as if heard from another room or carried on the wind from a distance, just as often as they land with full exterior force. The line between the universal and the personal, the objective and the subjective, is thus being constantly erased and re-drawn somewhere else, much as a good pop song makes private emotions felt universally.
“CeriseIcicles” doesn’t quite have the energy or impact of some of Mazzon’s electrifying live shows, though I suspect this is partly a result of choices made at the mastering stage. Though compact in length, the transitions between different sections or states are well-paced, neither indiscernible nor too abrupt. As with previous releases, Mazzon mixes recorded environments with live processing and manipulation in such a way as to force a rethink of how we participate in the world’s experience of itself — complexity and immediacy folded into one another.
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http://skritha.wordpress.com/ (Ennio Mazzon)
http://capillarywaves.bandcamp.com/ (Ripples Recordings)