Nashazphone, 2018. Collaboration piece between two major players in the contemporary Italian electro-acoustic music scene. Alberto Boccardi has studied composition and music theory at Milan’s Music Civic Academy and has frequently collaborated with Lawrence English, Nicola Ratti, and Maurizio Abate, among others. Stefano Pilia is a prolific guitarist and electro-acoustic theorist with a massive body of work and compositions. He has collaborated with Mike Watt, Nico Vascellari, David Tibet, and Valerio Tricoli, to name a few.
“The sounding worlds of Boccardi and Pilia meet in quasi-narrative paths. Immediately, from the first glance at the tracklist, something seems to thematize the encounter in its two-faced nature: two dedications (‘Bastet’ and ‘Dayira’, the birth), each one in two parts, but also an encounter between electric guitar and percussions. The guitar being itself already an encounter between acoustic and electric sounds. Yet again, organic and electronic soundscapes are coupled down into introspection and vision. While ‘Bastet’ is set to follow an inner voyage along memories and ambiences where Popol Vuh and Robert Rich seem to faintly appear, it is ‘Dayira’ that is given the mission of projecting the inner vision into vast emotional landscapes. And at the very end something new is birthed, a minor chord that apparently has nothing to do with the drones and patterns preceding it, along the sound of the entire album. An intriguing surprise that is driven by an electronic, floating aura to a quasi-interrupted ending. Functioning as a promise that this voyage has yet to be finished.” —Massimilano Viel, Milano, Italy, January 2018
“I love this new album Bastet by Alberto Boccardi and Stefano Pilia right from my first listen I decided I would go to the sea (my pedro town is in the harbor of Los Angeles) to write my thoughts about it cuz the sea is what I first thought of when I heard the first sounds of it coming — I figured it was the sea cuz I had feelings from the music I had these sensations cuz I felt I was in the ocean — on a boat… actually not just on a boat but in the bottom of it — down in the bilge. The musical interaction between Alberto and Stefano is seamless and whole, free of potentially encumbering static structures. I’m drawn into the pitch and yaw, the port and starboard, the heave and ho. The piece is made of two parts (‘Bastet’ and ‘Dayira’) with each of those parts being made of likewise two parts. By the middle I feel lower in the bowels of the boat and in fact, this boat is now feeling like a submarine and so not only am I deep down up in the vessel itself, the world I feel around in is also deep down in it, deep down beneath the waves and so I feel the pushing of currents, the pressure of the depths compressing the bulkheads. On the very bottom of the hull’s inside, over the keel I place my head so the vibrations can pass right the bone of my skull. The last part of the voyage for me is a surprise cuz now the sub feels more like a train. We’re still moving but everything is no longer wet and there are many gifts falling into my eyes and I survey the passing landscapes. The mechanized sounds throughout the piece by now only confirm my suspicion they were only coincidences of chance and not purpose-built reels of barbed-wire to enforce fake borders. Maybe this ‘railroad’ in my head actually was the sea becoming a river and I got confused. Whatever, Alberto and Stefano created and preformed a whole and beautiful work that I feel we are very lucky to get to share with them. Music connected by imagination to let the spirit flow true. No wonder I read somewhere the cat-headed old Egypt deity of past was considered the guardian of the dream world. I am inspired. Grazie, fratelli.” —Mike Watt, San Pedro, California, January 2018