ALEA [LINE – 2016]
For his first release on LINE, Alea, Italian composer/sound artist Luigi Turra changes the perspective of his expressive spectrum away from the Japanese influences of his previous work critically acclaimed epic 3CD work KI on the American label and/OAR.
Alea is a sound narration inspired by the works of the French novelist Marguerite Duras and her highly evocative semantic games, quiet but at the same time raw and desolate. Like a film without images the words are reduced to inaudible sounds and thin secret messages.
As a human presence perceived in rooms and empty corridors of an unfamiliar place, but through some sound evidence might exist, not far from an Atlantic Ocean beach where encounters take place between silent figures.
Among reflections in a distorting lens, the soundscape comes alive, able to interact with these invisible actors. Sounds wrapping them with tactile material micro-textures and sudden pauses that generate expectations.
Alea is a work that tells a sound in its essence, but analyzes this from the point of view of memory, of suggestion. The recognition of that inner voice that each of us possesses.
The innermost beingness is nourished by cryptic signals. Indications appearing on the spur of the moment, perhaps as one is driving or traveling, or even focusing on some unremarkable activity. They shine of a strange light for a few fugitive seconds, then return inside their nucleus of nihility. That core will remain unassailable by any form of analysis attempted in the vain hope of “knowing more”. That something is “knowable” only for the trademark overconfidence of humans affected by inferiority complexes.
In between those indiscernible messages, silence can either alleviate headaches or endanger securities. The emblematic attitude of the aforementioned specimens coincides with its systematic rupture, notwithstanding hordes of people reportedly “searching for silence” yet utterly incapable of giving up their collective eat-and-laugh-and-make-noise rituals and other miscellaneous actions obeying to the lowest common denominator of “belonging”.
Alea is a 41-minute piece that in a way could typify the irrational background of an individual looking into him/herself during the fight against uncertainty. In essence, this is a series of abbreviated sonic glimpses of varying extraction – instrumental shards, electronic incumbencies, field recordings, snippets of vocal narrative – significantly integrated with a heavy muteness. The divergence from what we have repeatedly been yawning to – courtesy of the numerous nonentities operating in the same ambit – and Luigi Turra’s work is summarized by a single word: symmetry. No event is born from accident; waiting times and actual acoustic manifestations are perfectly proportional; there is no time to get used to anything, no chance to encapsulate the encephalon in the “OK, I already know this” pattern. The overall balance is flawless, the anxiety/relaxation ratio resulting in a perfect zero.
Don’t be scared by real silence, unless your wish is remaining faithful to a timeless puerility.
(Massimo Ricci – Touching Extremes)