AMN Reviews: Christian di Vito – Battimuro (TibProd Italy)

R-6131837-1411850378-5210.jpegChristian di Vito is an experimental composer who lists Xenakis, Ligeti and Scelsi as primary influences. Listening to Battimuro, it is Giacinto Sclesi (1905-88), who made a huge impression in the early sixties with pieces sticking rigorously to a single note, who comes most readily to mind, as di Vito stands straight and tall and conducts wind and sea.

A warm, steady breeze, barely rippling the air, gusting just enough to disturb the uppermost fronds on the palm trees, is punctuated by a single wave that repeatedly rolls in, but never out again. Di Vito´s ambient drone is deceptively, amiably layered. Resist its somniferous effect or you will miss the play of gradually shifting colors. And then, more than halfway through Battimuro´s forty-seven minutes, a more drastic shift, as di Vito errs ever-so-slightly on the side of atonal, forcing frigid air to play icicles as though they were a calliope. A long organ croon is sustained, festooned and garlanded, until it ebbs out. Not a footprint is left on the beach. Or is it, in the snow?

Stephen Fruitman