Review of Hecate’s Hounds, Nusica.org, 2018
Two musicians. Two instruments. A double bass. A guitar. The rest? Space. Time. What defines space and time in music? Many aspects, some of which are the rhythm and the density of sound and the absence of sound. A complex, difficult, almost millimeter equilibrium where every variation corresponds to a different brushstroke from the palette of an Impressionist, where every alteration can result in an error or a subtle element of style. Let me please showsome Italian pride: Hecate’s Hounds is a record produced by an independent Italian label, nusica.org, and where one of the members, the guitarist Nico Soffiato, is an Italian who lives in Brooklyn, NY.
Let me show some satisfaction, but without any lack of respect and esteem for the US double bass player Zach Swanson, the other side of this great record. I have listened to Hecate’s Hounds several times and this work struck me for the balance between the two musicians, the play between improvisation and composition and the sound and the way they play with the sound to fill and manage a space that is both physical and mental. Soffiato and Swanson demonstrate excellent interplay and I was surprised by the way in which their interaction proves much more than a simple sum of the parts. I like to think of Hecate’s Hounds as a mature work and not a simple start. I hope these two musicians continue in their collaboration, I’m sure they would be able to give us several beautiful pages of music and sound.