Review of Like a Fire That Consumes All Before It, RareNoiseRecords, 2018
01 – Meet me where you know
02 – To make things float
03 – From a distance
04 – White
05 – The silver laugh
06 -A child and a pencil
07 – The gold house
08 – Like I wasn’t there
09 – A letter and a place
10 – The never ending pier
11 – 1-10” of happiness
12 – Swirling colours
13 – We had a good time
14 – A crack in time
15 – The space between
16 – Out in the blue
17 – Like I wasn’t there (reprise)
18 – Near by distance
Music from and inspired by the film “Cy Dear”
A documentary film about Cy Twombly
“This past hundred years of expanisiveness in music, a predominant fluid, non verbal, non linear medium, has been preparing us ofr the electronic ocean of the next century. As the world has moved towards becoing an information ocean, so music has become immersive. Listeners float in that ocean; musicians have become virtual travelers, creators of sonic theatre, transmitters of all the signals received across the aether.”
David Toop , Ocean of sound, Serpent’s Tail, 1995
Italian guitarist, RareNoiseRecords co-founder, multi-instrumentalist and composer Eraldo Bernocchi has created an evocative soundtrack for a new documentary film on American artist Cy Twombly. Imagined and produced by Michele Bongiorno, written and directed by Andrea Bettinetti, for GoodDay Films Ltd., Cy Dear was presented privately at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City in the Spring of 2018 and will have its festival premiere this Fall. Bernocchi’ created a immersive and atmospheric soundtrack following the life and times of the American painter-sculptor-photographer, whose work influenced a generation of younger artists including Jean-Michel Basquiat, Anselm Kiefer, Francesco Clemente and Julian Schnabel.
Though 80% of the sounds heard on Like a Fire That Consumes All Before It were generated by guitars, Bernocchi’s main instrument, they are adroitly disguised by the composer through deft use of echo, delay and reverb. “I used guitars mainly as a tool and when I really wanted to ‘sing’ a theme,” he says. “I had this guitar theme that was ringing in my ears and I started to sing harmonies that were dragging the piece deeper and deeper into the memory waters, where everything starts to blur and only emotions are floating. So I approached the guitars like an orchestra, layering part after part, singing aloud what I was hearing in my head and heart. And when the music was emotionally taking over, I chose and selected those parts pushing on the edge of feelings.”
I decided to quote David Toop for several reasons. The first one is because listening to this CD I wanted to read this book again. It’s something I do often. Ocean of Sound has lost nothing during these twenty-three years of listenings that followed its released in 1995. Toop’s writing has anticipated the musical moments that we live now, outlining a path that I can find in this record. The concepts of immersive music. Ideas on a musical environment. The possibilities of a sound that becomes reverberation, physical space, a tangible fact.
The second reason is that Bernocchi managed to go beyond the guitar. I think this is the most intriguing aspect about “Like a Fire That Consumes All Before It”. It’s difficult to recognize the guitar as an ideological instrument on this record. Although the record was made for 80% using the guitar, the result of alterations and changes to its original sound are such as to upset the structure, change the musical texture, overturn the memory.
The result is a suspended music. Time becomes a tangible but slowed reality. And the recording quality is such as to create in my room a set of reverberations that make the sound even more physical, deeper, more immersive.
“Like a Fire That Consumes All Before It” is a small masterpiece that expresses both a research work and an intimately emotional vision that can be enjoyed regardless of its soundtrack nature.