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Alio Die

Progressive Electronic

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Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
5 stars Alio Die is the alias Italian progressive-electronic/ambient/experimental/take-your-pick artist Steffano Musso has been utilising since the Eighties, and an evocative and varied body of work he has built up for himself (as well as numerous collaborations) over the decades. Each new release is more unpredictable than the last, some being gorgeous instrumental works, others ethereal vocal projects, but 2018's `Kalisz Concert' sees the man stripping things back to a more primal and deeply intimate level. An improvised performance recorded at the Kalisz Ambient Festival in Poland in October 2016, Alio Die and some musical guests craft a heady concoction of sedate droning synths, flute, zither and various percussive shells, rattles and bells, for a seamless fusion of immersive acoustic and electronic atmospheres.

Despite the recording being credited as seven individual tracks on the back of the CD edition cover, it's really one sole extended aural collage that weaves an uninterrupted long-form soundworld of just over an hour in length, with only the most minute of barely perceptible changes. Pensive chimes ring, the lightest of reflective patterns escape subtle looping electronic washes, and drowsy ambient caresses cast a hallucinogenic spell that lethargically wraps around the listener and stretches on for eternity. Light eastern textures permeate the background, groaning and sighing chants seductively purr at the senses and soothing acoustic strums spiral into infinity. Tranquil field recordings of nature and tendrils of running water flitter through, sighing drones gently disorientate and humming sustaining reverberations teem with life.

This performance casts such a mesmerising spell over any listener who can take the patient time to let the piece envelop them, and `Kalisz Concert' completely transcends any sense of time, space or musical fashions with its unhurried grace, sophistication and intelligence. You could spend a lifetime being taken over by this exploratory and sublime work of spontaneous and delicate sighing atmosphere, and it quickly proves to be a deeply moving and haunting hymn-like meditation, a truly beautifully spiritual musical awakening.

Five stars.

Report this review (#1943466)
Posted Friday, July 6, 2018 | Review Permalink
4 stars It has taken me quiet some time to put words to this live recorded experience more so to rate it.

Alio Die - Kalisz Concert (2018) captures perfectly Alio Die´s mastery as a performing composer. His ability to build up front, enticing, transparent structures from scratch could not be best portrayed than in a live performance . The repertoire consists of seven uninterrupted compositions taken from 6 albums which go from 1993 to 2017 and he plays alongside Tomek Pilecki & Mateusz Ciszczon both on rattles and bells.

Alio Die´s music language, to set it somewhere for newcomers in these electronic music borderlines, could be called Post-Bay Area School of electronic music because of its electro/acoustic blend and back to nature spirit.

A gentle tour de force of mutating & mysterious environments embracing trance inducing melodic lines with clear identities, solid musical structures, moods and tempos.

The repertoire is as follows (Track-Song-Album). The stars, of course, are mine:

1- Axis Mundi II - Tripudium Naturae (2010) ****

2- Brace Di Trasformazione - Il Tempo Magico Di Saturnia Pavonia (2003) *****

3- Vulnerable Choice - Seamlessly Bliss (2006) *****

4- Amadriadi - Tripudium Naturae (2010) ****

5- Expansion And Contraction - Sit Tibi Terra Levis/Introspective (1993) ****

6- The Door Of Possibilities - (Alio Die & Ora) The Door Of Possibilities (1994)*****

7- Time Zone Portal - Time Zone Portal (2017) ***** (even 6 if allowed)

My Rating ****4.5 PA stars.

Report this review (#2168176)
Posted Saturday, March 23, 2019 | Review Permalink

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