Stefano Scodanibbio is a virtuoso whose command of the contrabass has opened up vast new areas of sound.
Written for solo bass and eight-channel tape, his latest piece is a tour de force that employs 26 methods of sound production, including nail scratching, natural harmonics, tremelo pizzicato, "whisper" bowing and "lashing" of legno and hair. Edited and layered into an oozing, yawning, fluttering sonic tableau, it lasts for an hour. Intensely rhythmic and dramatically sculpted, the piece represents the "animal" side of the contrabass, which here sounds at times like marimba and clarinet but also has access to deep, abyssal drones unlike anything else in music. An amazing achievement.
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