The imaginary landscape and research music by Luigi Sini and Andrea Biagini, “Imaginary Landscape”, EMA Vinci Records, 2022
I have a proposal to start this review. I would propose to replace the term ‘contemporary music’ with the, for me, more suitable, ‘research music’, to indicate music created by two specialists, a composer and an interpreter, not for the use and consumption of a large market, but in favor of research and exploration of new musical fields. So research music, music dedicated to the creation of new prototypes, new perspectives. In fact, I believe the term contemporary has become so commonly used that it has lost all its specific identity. In reality, everything is perpetually contemporary in this so nuanced and liquid society, to the point of confusing the aesthetic and semantic points of reference. I was recently asked to review a classical guitar album, one of the most sugary and bubblegum music I have ever listened to; although I tried to motivate my refusal by stating that my blog only dealt with contemporary, avant-garde and experimental for guitar, my interlocutor, skipping these last two definitions, said he was amazed at my refusal as what he was playing was contemporary music, as it was composed just this year. An almost surreal discussion. That gentleman is a graduate of the Conservatory.
So I would propose to define these musics, contained in the cd “Imaginary Landscape”, the work of the flutist Andrea Biagini and the guitarist Luigi Sini, as research music as it is the expression of our contextual contemporaneity, the most ‘ancient piece’ Esquisse En Noir ‘ by Ivan Vandor dates back to 1990, while the others were composed between 2009 and 2020, but above all as an expression of a spirit of research, evolution, definition of new boundaries, of exploration of new possibilities and sounds.
A desire for ‘new’, which seems to have faded in recent years, in every musical sphere, in favor of an impoverished musical restoration. My congratulations to the two interpreters who have been able to recall this desire for innovation, creating a new repertoire with pieces composed for classical guitar and flute, by Ada Gentile, Fabrizio De Rossi Re, Ivan Vandor, Lucio Gregoretti, Luis De Pablo and Marcello Panni.
The classical guitar duo is among the best known and best explored in the musical field, the two instruments balance well with each other, both in terms of volume and tone, leaving composers the possibility of creating new combinations on themes such as extroversion, the signs of the zodiac, Spanish poetry, the consoling night, ships in ferrous decay …
I don’t think it’s a coincidence that “Imaginary Landscape” implicitly mentions John Cage: the most explored and sought-after component here is sound. The two instruments are pushed to the limit of their possibilities, as are the respective skills of the two performers.
“Imaginary Landscape” is one of those albums that is good for research music, always looking for not only new composers and ideas, but above all new performers who want to take up the engineering and creative challenges.