Ramos – program notes

To access the audio and complete info, please visit our page with Redshift Records.

Below you will find the program notes in English.  Em português: notas de programa.

Construção II (2011) by Rafael de Oliveira                                                               http://rolvr.wordpress.com

Construção II is based on the soundscape of a construction site in Vila Nova de Gaia (Portugal). The rhythms, harmonies and textures extracted from this soundscape are revealed through a musical narrative, triggered by the piano. The sounds from the construction site are elaborated through an ambiguity between references to the substance of these materials and the abstractions of the electroacoustic composition. The piano works as a mediator between the concrete and the imaginary, taking the role of a dialogue with all these materials and allowing an interaction between the listener and this soundscape full of energy.

Curva ao Infinito (2012) by Edson Zampronha                                                                    www.zampronha.com

Curva ao Infinito (Curve toward the infinite) offers listeners a stimulating experience exploring singular sound images. The piece begins with a piano melody in improvised style, in contrast with almost static electroacoustic sounds. As the electroacoustic sounds build with strength, the piano responds melodically. Throughout the work, the interplay between electroacoustic sounds and the piano is designed to give performers room to create a flexible performance, and to get the best out of their individual expressivity. Curva ao Infinito was especially composed for the Going North project, created and performed by Luciane Cardassi. 

Douce Dame Jolie (2017) by Maria Eduarda Mendes Martins                    http://www.memmmusic.wordpress.com

Douce Dame Jolie is a rendition of a 14th century song of the same name, composed by Guillaume de Machaut. In composing this piece, Maria was interested in exploring the many sonic possibilities in the combination of piano, electronics, and voice, in relation to the ancient song structure which Douce Dame Jolie obeyed — the Virelai.

afloat (2014) by Paulo Guicheney

 afloat was composed for Luciane Cardassi. It arose from a reading of a poem by Sylvia Plath – the second part of Two Views of a Cadaver Room– which was itself inspired by The Triumph of Deathby Pieter Bruegel the Elder. Structurally, the work makes use of what the composer refers to as “polyphony of periodicities” (layers of repetition in different tempi), and “glissando of tempi” (continuing accelerations and decelerations). The samples (the electroacoustic counterpart of the piece) join the piano – now a microtonal instrument – becoming a single world both electronic and acoustic. Cardassi’s voice is present in the samples, as well as in passages performed live. The pianist recorded different renditions of the poem by Plath, which were afterwards deconstructed electronically. afloat deepens the fundamental quest of Guicheney’s poetry: the tense interaction – at times aggressive – between literature and music.

memorial do granito (2015) by Rodolfo Valente                                          http://www.rodolfovalente.com.br

“One cannot respond to granite with a child’s anger” writes Gaston Bachelard in his book Earth and Reveries of Will. Granite imposes its own time, a time with the hardness of stone. It is the active time established in the relationship between the artisan’s effort and the stone’s resistance. Only one who often visits the stone can learn its own time, its impersonal diction, its cold morality, its concrete poetics, its compact economy. Nothing of that is known by the kings we read about in books. In Thebes of the Seven Gates, the remaining stones hold only the memory of the hands which worked them.

In its own terms, memorial do granito is an investigation of non-narrative dialectics between the elements ‘earth’ and ‘air’, which are suggested on several levels: the solid aspect of the instrumental gestures as opposed to the weightless quality of the electronic sounds, the confrontation between specific gestures and different frequency ranges, and the play between sudden interruptions and fluid connections.

Mohamed’s Clock (2016) by Rodrigo Meine

Written in early 2016 as a commission from pianist Luciane Cardassi, to whom it is dedicated, Mohamed’s Clock is a brief commentary on the incident that took place in September 14, 2015, when Muslim student Ahmed Mohamed was taken into custody for bringing a reassembled digital clock – allegedly a hoax bomb – to school. Following the incident, allegations regarding Ahmed’s origins ignited discussions with enough repercussions to reach the White House. The piece models some aspects that permeated the incident: its ever-growing scope in the progressively distorted electronic sounds, the ticking clock in the moto perpetuo, the alleged bomb in the noisy, visceral ending. Thus, it expresses this author’s feelings and reaction regarding the incident, while avoiding taking sides or adopting simple dichotomic views.

Ramos (2016) by Paulo Rios Filho                                                              http://www.pauloriosfilho.com

Ramos is a piece for piano (with voice) and electroacoustic sounds, written in collaboration with pianist Luciane Cardassi. The work unfolds through the life fragments, histories and wisdom of Dona (Mrs.) Lúcia, a healer from the Delta of the Parnaíba River in Northern Brazil. The composition builds upon threads and moments of friendship between Mrs. Lucia and the composer, and between the composer and the performer. Ramos is a tribute to the figure of healer; an expressive effort of gratitude for Dona Lúcia’s strength and generosity, reflecting the powers of nature to cure, with faith and invocation.