DIMINUZIONI ALL'IMPROVVISO, by harpsichordist Mario Sollazzo released online on November 15!
What can you do on a hot summer night? This cd is the result of Mario Sollazzo's very personal experience as he describes in the booklet:
"Over the years, I accumulated and studied many different pieces of music: this practice takes place in the intimacy of solitude, as an exercise in the highest sense of the term, between discipline and freedom that feed each other. One night, in August 2021, I therefore decided to do the experiment you are listening to: it is a study session in which I improvise on different pieces, belonging to periods and styles that are even far away from each other. It is a work of abstraction: the text is eliminated from the vocal pieces, the colors of human voice and instruments are eliminated, in exchange for the transparency of a single 8’ register harpsichord, in order to concentrate on the essentials of the musical composition. I looked for temperaments (ie tuning systems) that could highlight one or the other harmonic aspects of the specific piece on which I improvised. I enjoyed this exercise from an aesthetic point of view: as a Byzantine portrait is not less beautiful than a Renaissance one just because it lacks perspective, in the same way a temperament that today sounds harsh and almost "out of tune" to our ears might instead be functional to the aesthetic rendering of a piece, sometimes even just for a particular note used on specific harmonies of a single piece, exactly as a Byzantine portrait finds its beauty precisely in the lack of perspective realism. What you listen to are therefore totally improvised tracks without any audio editing, recorded as they were born on an August night. It is a journey through centuries, places and harmonies, something that no musician of the past could have done: it is our privilege, as musicians of the 21st century, to be able to perform music coming from very far in time and space without being immersed in any of the cultural contexts in which the pieces were created."
For sure the result is special, fresh and immersive.