text has been written in the occasion of the event related to Arci
Prize for musical experimentation awarded by Romina. It took place at
Carroponte (Sesto San Giovanni, Milan) in July 2011and promoted by
Centro Musica Contemporanea.
program refers to the phase of work prior to its date
and not to
the Spannung album tracklist currently in
production or to future performances
related to the
Presentation of performance
[by Romina Daniele]
«Spannung» is the compositional project
currently in production since 2009 for RDM Records, some of the new
compositions will be presented during the performance.
«Spannung» is the term with which Martin
Heidegger indicates the opening, the space, the tension (and the
yearning) of being in the size of the authenticity of existence:
never properly discussed, corresponding to the state of research, it
requires close and new ways each time, away from clichés and intellect
and compositional schemes.
Along with the studies carried on for more than
ten years in the philosophical an literature field as in that of vocal
research and studio sound composition, the music with new technologies
is elected as research device, superior to every other one, in the
study on the human being; in the same way, the voice is the most
powerful mean of human expression,
physiological, and linguistic point of
view. The axis for the project and work is, in a more direct way, the
urgent relations between the musical and philosophical conceptions.
[Voice, electronics, texts,
all the compositions by
Romina Daniele. Additional
credits are noted;
composition in brackets, unpublished in red, additional credits follow]
L’écriture et la différence, Parigi, Seuil, 1968;
tr. it. La scrittura e
la differenza, Torino, Einaudi, 2002, p. 5.
La Natura Assente
from Porgy and Bess, 1935.
Forcener le subjectile, Munich, Schirmer/Mosel Publishers;
Artaud, Forsennare il soggettile,
Milano, Abscondita, 2005, p. 78.
All’esterno di me
The musical research begun with Diffrazioni
Sonore (cd, 2005), a complex recording project focused on the
relation between vocal improvisation and fixed sound composition by
technological means, concerns the fields of extended vocals,
technological arts, fluctuations between compositional and
performative and/or improvised practice. It continues with
Aisthànomai, the Tragedy of Consciousness
of electronics as in that of poetical interpretations and vocality as
human act, in force of an original aesthetic conception (from which
the term Aisthànomai comes) corresponding to the linguistic
research (on the vocal and compositional-electronical means) and
philosophical (on the articulations by the perceptive system, on
inter-subjective communication between creator-subject and
audience-subject, on the necessity-will of knowledge and
The size of the authenticity of existence and
the state of research regard the relations, on which the
compositional interest since the very first experiences is about.
In particular: coexistence of different languages
to intend "different but not opposite", with the words of Gilles
and "philosophical indifferentiation of grammars", with the words of
Pier Paolo Pasolini;
so the relations: between composition and instinct, sound and
noise, construction and dismantling, ancient and post-modern;
between the well known structures of thinking and new senses and
new articulations of thought to which we aim constantly. The uneasy
interest to the relations is at all levels of the work: text,
poetical and narrative, and the concept of textuality; music and
dimensions of musicality; extended vocals from noise to sound, and not
extended from recitative to operatic; electronics, with synthesis
and/or concrete sounds and/or pure and/or transformed vocal sounds.
Thus, each level works in terms of proliferation, by it-self and in
relation with each other; so at all levels of the works: not the
accomplishment but the opening, not the system nor its negation
today system it self, but the tension, which is always action,
force in action.
On the other hand, the opening, the space,
the tension (and the yearning) of being in the size of the
authenticity of existence, which is force in action, are the
conditions of the state of research, from which comes the
interrogation (and the constant tension towards it) about new sense
and articulations of though and perception behind the well known
schemes, feeding doubt and a whirlpool of feelings. So it is the
presence and authenticity of the creative act, intellectual and
expressive, compositional and performative, reticular and not
genealogical as well; or rather it comes from the reflection on man to
the music and viceversa, and it works, it only can works, trough
music. This indicates a primary identification between the
philosophical-linguistical research and the music, so in our
exploration and moods, musical languages and grammars are adopted from
the philosophical point of view.
On the one hand the work is focused on an
emancipated conception of music and performance, in which dealing in
the field of electronics (with synthesis sounds) and
of electroacoustics (with vocal and/or transformed sound in studio
and/or in live), we refer to the categories of music, from blues to
the contemporary, in a field of crossing and indifferentiation; on
the other hand the work is focused on the sound research and on the
sound material composition, as in the field of vocalism as in that of
electronics, and on the exploration of the sound wave in the
frequency and time domains, in terms as poetical as scientific as
Material timbre resonance fixed sounds sound
research and extend vocals from noise to melody, from delicate to
aggressive, from recitative to scream, from hiss to guttural
scratches, to the concreteness of temporality of human condition and
to the size of authenticity of being, state
of research and pure action: "tension of force itself",
with the words of Jacques Derrida, directly quoted in one of the new
The electronic device, like the music, is
elected to the device superior to every other in the reflection on man
an his reality: the electronic devices allow man to observe
himself and his reality with an efficiency otherwise inaccessible,
they are the more powerful means developed by man in order of this.
This is about a detailed observation of the material and of the poetry
of the material, on which depends every things, even the poetry of
mind an its mechanisms. So it is for photography, cinema, electronic
music, as in every field of human application and research, to
In the electronic and concrete music, the
vocalism itself, like every kind of sound and noise, is analyzed and
processed with an efficiency otherwise inaccessible. - Furthermore,
the electronic music with which we work directly on sound corresponds,
with its technical reproducibility, to the
will of the author par excellence, not delegating to the performer the
responsibility of creating or altering the sound substance which is
the result of months and years of work, reflections, choices.
In this line, from the point of view of the
musical composition and creative action, and in consideration of the
previous works, this project develops a fresh size and formal
representation, regarding the relation-coexistence between poetry and
poetical-musical conception and analysis with electronic device from
which the technologies arts came: on the one hand the sound
elaboration and transformation, on the other the pure poetry of
vocalism which par excellence represents man both on the
psycho-physical and organic-perceptive axis; the points of junction
of the two poles: the research on the sonorous and vocal material.
Firstly, the voice is the main and direct
expressive human mean, from the anthropological, physiological, and
linguistic points of view; secondly, it is a musical instrument.
In order to this, we work both with texts (poetical and/or
philosophical) and intelligible vocals, with melodic and gibberish
vocals. In the field of sound research, between the concepts of
"sonorous object" and "musical gesture", and between music and
technological arts, the emancipation of the human voice takes place as
well: in the fluctuations between language and concepts and singing
styles, and the detachment from the language and the singing styles,
until being a pure material and sonorous object par excellence.
The performance starts with the very first
unpublished composition written within the project,
[2009-2010]. Composed starting
from additive synthesis and frequency modulation sounds, the piece
is focused on the relation between the micro varied and imposing
sonorous material, dominated by modulations between white noise
and sawtooth, and a kind of
varying its internal
marked by glottal strokes; while the sonorous
stream jerks the synthetic thunders. From a technical point of view, the composition
represents the emblem of the match-relation-coexistence between the so
made sonorous masses and the reassuring melody with which it ends.
From a conceptual and poetical point of view, it is also the emblem of
the investigation of man on man declared as necessary: the character
of Tommy Moore is one of the many presented by James Joyce in his
Ulysses, as the background against which the adventures of the
protagonist take place, mentioned
occasionally a few times. The metaphoric reference is not connected to
the alleged adventures of the character; it is
connected to Joyce's writings techniques, in which the
characters do not need any historical context and the narrated events
are a very excuse for the author who subverts the language and the
narrative concept itself.
The operation, often called stream of
consciousness, has strong and ramified linguistic and
and so the metaphoric reference does: we deduce that man still lives
into the unconscious-inconsistence of the existential, intellectual
and psycho-physical condition; moreover we deduce the limits of the
known language and the transparent adhesion to this or that system of
rules; we deduce that to create, in any field and in an
interdisciplinary and reticular point of view, it means creating -
aiming to create with every possible and new means - the same
language structure with which to work, starting from the decay of
A part of the composition
Necessity (part I)
[2009-2010] follows; we are
presenting here as well this new piece written during the very first
compositional period of the project, and composed starting from
additive synthesis and frequency modulation sounds, from the micro
varied mass of ferruginous and/or industrial sounds, beaten by a
single percussive stroke, the same every
time. A passage from
Derrida is declaimed:
«Anguish, also of a taken away breath, by itself, to return to
itself. Because to speak is to know that thought must take a distance
The passage is recited
more times, with tune and timbre variations, until becoming a melodic
progression, in a blues and/or jazz style, clearly in conflict with
the sound materials; since the reiteration of the passage implies a
reflection so deep in mind and in the feelings to keep the voice away
from the same passage, from the words, from the language, with which
it manifests itself and from which it twists itself, to keep the voice
close, like an exorcism, to more graceful and more tormenting
The reflection implied is about language and
writing, and represents one of the most loved and felt concept by the
quoted thinker, connected in its turn to very technical and specific
reflections on: human though system, its instruments, the language
used in the word and so as thought, the real and not verbal substance
of thought which probably exists before the language (?)
The unpublished piece
a variation work and English version within the project of the
, published in Aisthànomai,
the Tragedy of Consciousness; it bridges to the part of the
concert dedicated to this previous compositional project and record,
of which the pieces Echo,
Fallacità (take I), Fallacità (take II) [2002-2007]
follow as well.
In the first and second pieces, the work is
mainly on the internal resonances within the harmonic-based sound
streams that is the background against which the vocals take place.
With text, first in English then in Italian, it expresses its
plasticity trough masks and ranges, more directly than wherever else
during the concert; in the other pieces, the ideal both noisy and
melodic counterpoint of the relation between the different voices or
streams is added to the work on the internal resonances within the
harmonic-based sound streams. It is about the detailed previous work
of constructing sounds and spatialization; on the one hand regarding
the same relations as the coexistence of different elements,
and on the other regarding the idea of the between
compositional as "the prolongation of the past into the present".
The different voices are both vocal (according
to the compositional way based on editing started with Diffrazioni
and of electronic nature. Rigorously, time does not beat anything in
all of this, except the repeating bass sounds which progressively come
out to remark the vocal phrases as the sonorous masses in the first
take of Fallaciousness, to be more evident in the second one.
The texts of these compositions are poetic, both in Italian and
English; the complete versions can be found in Aisthànomai and
are focused on the concept of the "apprehension to the research"
referring to the individual consciousness.
Characterized by a vocal improvisation part, the
La Natura Assente [2010-2011]
is part (like the following piece)
of a more recent or second compositional period, within the project,
unpublished as well.
The original version of the composition is
spatialized on four channels and, like all
the work we are presenting here, it is conceived on the fixed sound
which means its final and definitive form coincides with the
reproduction support and/or the spatialized reproduction.
Here we are presenting the live electronics version with
some variations related with live processing on live voice, which
works against a background of pre-transformed sonorous materials as
results of very long steps of works otherwise not presentable.
Human voice is the only original material,
transformed or used in the amplified form, in a continuous fluctuation
between recording and transforming. The electro-vocal composition
comes from the multimedia usage of voice, since all of it - phonetics,
anthropology, musicality, reference to intelligible discourse and to
real or emarginated textuality - works within the electronic device.
The methodology at the base of the work is
spectromorphological, the main techniques are manipulation and
interpolation. On the one hand, transformation is mainly starting from
extended vocalism, complex sounds, sub-harmonic and noisy sounds; on
the other hand it regards a kind of structural and homogeneous
morphing between original sound and constructed sound, paying
attention to the recognizability of the human sound source, varying in
relation with the different moments of the composition.
The poetics of the work carries on as well a
constant fluctuation between lost of sense and intelligibility, and
implies strong linguistic-philosophical reflections connected with the
relation between man and nature; extremely conceptual, the text
consists of passages chosen by the namesake original poem, paying
attention to the pure musical and sonorous values.
The investigation on the relation between
technological means and poetry through the vocal possibilities has
exactly extended the work to the creation of electronic sounds, with
particular reference to the groups of concepts already described:
So, considering the following piece as well, this composition
can be defined as emblematic of the study and work of which
the concert that we are presenting here is
Our version of
by George Gershwin follows; the
dialectical relation with the previous composition (unpublished as
well) is emblematic of the relation-coexistence between
poetical-musical conception and analysis and technological arts in
which we work: where before there was sound elaboration and
transformation, now there is the pure poetry of vocalism, and the
points of junction of the two poles, however: is a research on the
sonorous and vocal material.
The version we are presenting here does not
elaborate so much of the sonorous-musical stream, which, with the
tunes reduced to the minimal harmonic, is focused once more on the
internal movements of sound; it works on the sonorous-vocal material
from a more plastic point of view.
In the first part of the piece, the singing of
the original English text is immediately expressive as it works in the
middle range, strongly empathizing the tradition between blues, jazz
and popular music, historically intended; in the second part asserts
itself with an incisive operatic-like tune clearly connected with the
original opera which the piece is part of (Porgy and Bess) -,
but working in a such revisiting way in which every word or textual
form are eliminated and the singing itself is de-structured until
materialization in the same breath or scratch, within the
dramaturgical and material agitation of the performative action.
At this point, the final part of the performance
presents the following pieces:
belonging to the first compositional period
of the unpublished compositions (Tommy Moore and Necessity),
traces the way presented so far on the compositional and poetical
reflections of the very starting point of the project. The
thunderstorm of sounds and their mass are the background against which
the voice sings in relation with a synthetic bass sound, in a similar
way but jumping on the three ranges of which the distance and
difference come out, and pronouncing just four words from the original
passage in French: LeTTRe [letter] Être [being] AuTRe
[other] ÊTRETÉ [be-ness]. The words, taken from the Derrida's
essay on Antonin Artaud,
and which are quoted here exactly in the same graphic form used by
Derrida, are synthetically and conceptually referred to the mentioned
problematic issue described in the second piece, Necessity (part I),
with the addiction of further references and considerations to the
Artaud opera as to the relation between this opera and the Derrida's
interpretation, as to the same language philosophy of this latter.
All’esterno di me
is the new version of the namesake piece
published in Aisthànomai in 2008, which is in the same way of
the previous Summertime for what concerns the musical
conception, to focus the work on the pure vocalism poetry away
from every language, regarding the vocal-sonorous material. Voice
uses operatic tunes working on its internal resonance and docile
and feverish tunes agonizing at intervals, to end
with a totally de-constructing live processing
part, in which the classical melody turns into synthetic percussions
jumping on the stereo channels; while vocals, with mainly operatic
tunes, jerks into an ideal duet with the computer transformations.
The experience precedes that of the piece which,
in different variations, closes each performance from the beginning of
Originally composed for fixed sounds (published in Diffrazioni
Sonore) and not intelligible vocal material, the piece has been
presented for recitative voice (the poems There are no illusions
for me to the question and Absence (or my threshold pain)
since Aisthànomai was published (2008).
Today it is presented for extended
recitative voice with a passage from Ascenseur pour l'èchafaud
(France, Louis Malle, 1959) scenario movie which was the subject of
the study we conducted, during the same time we worked on
Aisthànomai not occasionally, on the relations between sound and
imagine, and connected with all our work as well.
We worked on this passage with the pieces Dix Ans,
Vingt Ans, Nuit sur les Champs-élysées (take I) e Nuit sur les
Champs-élysées (take II), published in Aisthànomai as well,
of which the last two are tributes to Miles Davis, taken from the
«Regarding the (formal) structure:
I always was been interested in the so-called
"entre-deux-coup-de-dés" by Deleuze: the between of the
composition, the most ambiguous part of it. So the objective is
to exalt the terms of the construction-sensation relationship, not
as conflict but as several extensions.» Cfr. Diffrazioni Sonore
theoretical line text, cd booklet (RDM Records, 2005-2010).
P. P. Pasolini, Empirismo Eretico, Milano, Garzanti,
1972, pp. 9-28.
indifferentiation of grammars".
I draw the meaning that is closest to me from the
of this definition: Indifferentiation of
linguistic codes of a philosophical nature.
Indifferentiation of linguistic codes starting from ?cognitive?
research. Non-individuability of codes (linguistic grammar is
the system, emblem of every system) within cognitive research.»
Cfr. R. Daniele, Aisthànomai, il Dramma Della
Coscienza, theoretical line text, cd booklet, RDM
Records/Romina Daniele, Milano, 2008.
Cfr. Diffrazioni Sonore
theoretical line text, cd booklet, cit.; H. Bergson,
Matière et memoire.
Essai sur la relation du corps à l’esprit,
Paris, Alcan, 1896; tr. it.
Materia e memoria. Saggio sulla relazione tra il
corpo e lo spirito
(a cura di A. Pessina), Roma-Bari, Laterza, p. 200.
Daniele, Aisthànomai, il Dramma della Coscienza, cd
booklet, cit. In particular,
electronics must be considered in conceptual and practical
relation with sound and technique (meaning technology) world; so
as the voice must be considered in relation with material and
nature world, language with text and conceptual world.
Cfr. Tracks 5,6,7 of the mentioned record, which includes the
related text in the booklet.