Boomkat Product Review:
Another remarkable archival discovery, recorded in 1980 and presented on vinyl for first time by Italy’s Black Sweat Records to follow that Amazonia 6891 cracker: again hingeing on the input of ethnomusicologist Walter Maioli (flutes and percussions), this time in a live collaboration with Gabin Dabiré (balafon, percussions) and Riccardo Sinigaglia (piano, organ and synthesiser).
Isole Del Suono documents a live performance between that trio held in Piazzo Santo Stefano in Bologna. And, thanks to the fact it was recorded directly from the mixing console, and together with Giuseppe Ielasi’s mastering, the fidelity of the recording is practically like you’re there, netted in a lush, atemporal swirl.
That effect is most apparent in the widely spacious yet intricately layered harmony of the A-side, which greets with a cluster of flutes and spectral rattles before absorbing the listener in a what feels like a late kosmiche jam transported somewhere sexier, freely expressive and less portentous or proggy.
The other side, however, is much more varied, starting out by giving Sinigaglia a spot to show off waterfalls of cascading keys, whereas the 2nd track is plays like a more conventional, if esoeteric, slice of Italian library music dominated by Maioli’s flute soloing, and the last section turns to Dabiré for a mesmerising Balafon jam rent sky high with deft reverbs.
To be honest, none of those three hit the heady, transcendent heights of the A-side, but that A-side is just totally fucking incredible.