‘Upon Contact Reworked’ is a collaborative work from Bruno Sanfilippo that features some of the most highly acclaimed artists from the electronic music scene including Francesco Giannico, Olan Mill, Leonardo Rosado, Jorge Haro, Quivion and Hior Chronik in which an original piece written for piano is re-envisioned by each artist.
7/10 Jim Staff review, 15 May 2015
Bruno Sanfilipo is an ivory tinkler who specialises in meandering, wistful notes that luxuriate in acres of melancholy spaciousness, with his foot firmly placed on the piano’s sustain pedal so that the notes hang plaintively in the air. This album features his five minute piece, ‘Upon Contact’ in its original form and then reworked by a series of electronic music producers, who do various thinks such as add field recordings, embellish the skeletal chord structure of the original with atmospheric textures or resample the original to add layers of subtle complexity.
It’s hard not to compare Bruno’s music to that of masters of this style of playing, like Ryuichi Sakamoto or Harold Budd. For me Sanfilipo’s style seems warmer, more romantic somehow, in comparison to the crystalline quality of Sakamoto’s playing or Budd’s introspective restraint. All the reworkings here are very respectful of Sanfilipo’s style and are careful to enhance the original track rather than give it a radical overhaul. My preference is for the more ‘electronic’ tracks here, like Jorge Haro’s version, which sets up a shimmering insect trickle that breaths beneath an abstracted snippet of the original piano; reminding me of Alva Noto’s more reflective ambient moments.
Unfortunately though, the repetition of the same motifs and rather ponderous spaciousness does feel a tad cloying to me, but if you love piano driven melancholia laced with atmospheric electronics, you will probably love this.
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