Some times music demands that boundaries are broken, recrafted and rebuilt. Vincenzo Ramaglia does this with the skill of a craftsman, taking time and care in his work as he produces self-defined PEM (Popular Experimental Music). His latest release, ‘La parole 7’ features the vocals of Laure Le Prunenec as they traverse the soundscapes of the unheard and undiscovered, specifically lyrics that are from a real-time invented language.
Entirely conceived via an electronic setup without a computer, Vincezo Ramaglia’s upcoming album La parole will continue to feature Laure Le Prunenec on several other tracks. The album will be released on the 24th of January with ‘La parole 5’ appearing at the end of this week. Director of the Griffith Academy of Cinema and Television in Rome, Ramaglia has also used his extensive skill set to create his own music videos, which are a treat on the eyes and deserve to be savoured.
Knowing better than to allow this unique character to slip through our fingers, we jumped at the opportunity to sit down for an exclusive interview with him.
Describe your sound for us. What do you want people to feel when they hear your music?
I try to recreate – with my sound – the same rhythmic restlessness of breakcore, but in an impromptu way, without editing, treating the machines as a musical instrument and often letting the slippery rhythm suddenly dissolve in an impalpable rarefaction.
It’s like I’m looking for the impossible ridge between two antipodes: I would like the listener to perceive the rhythmic disorientation of the most skewed IDM in the more caressing and persuasive emotions of the ambient music, the impromptu breath of improvisation in the most sophisticated structuralism of a score.
Which 3 artists have influenced you the most growing up?
Have I really to choose only 3? Okay, so… Sergej Prokof’ev, Radiohead, Arvo Pärt.
How did you discover your particular sound?
In recent years, letting my hands roam freely on my electronic setup without a computer.
But that sound matured inside me over time, paradoxically long before I knew electronics.
What are the most important pieces of equipment to you?
I give great value to every single component of my setup, so I can only say where my hands come back with more frequency when I improvise on electronics.
In the case of my last album (Atomic City) and of my incoming album (La parole), I found myself tinkering more often with the effects (Elektron Octatrack and Pioneer RMX-1000) than with the synths (Dreadbox, DSI, Moog, Nord, Elektron). It is as if I were more interested in the manipulation and segmentation of sounds than in the sounds themselves…
What outside of music inspires you to create?
In 2013 I was impressed by a tiny ghost town of Idaho, lost in the middle of nowhere, whose name several years later would become the title of my last album (“Atomic City”, Dark Companion Records, 2019).
I can find inspiration in a journey, a place, a landscape, a work of art. Or in a person, a feeling, a fixation. Sometimes, in a discomfort that I have to translate into music or to which I have to react with music.
Do you have a favourite memory of your career so far that you will take with you forever?
I have several (the first time before an audience, the first time an orchestra performed my score, the first time I recorded an album in a studio, etc.). But I want to mention a recent one. Last October 15th, in my film school (Griffith Academy of Cinema and Television in Rome): shooting of a touching performance by Laure Le Prunenec for a music video that I directed and edited.
An experience of pure beauty and strong emotion, which is carved in my heart.
What is your personal favourite track off of your upcoming album, La parole?
Even though the track to which I am most emotionally connected for the reasons already expressed is ‘La parole 7’, and if Laure’s favourite track is ‘La parole 5’, for purely musical reasons I choose to mention ‘La parole 6’.
Your track, ‘La parole 7’ features Laure Le Prunenec. What was it like to work alongside her?
The extraordinary voice of Laure pervades the whole album, I composed each track for her, for her specific vocal interpretation. Even the title of the album (La parole) refers – paradoxically – to the “real-time invented language” typical of Laure’s improvisations.
I consider the collaboration with Laure really special. It has become a friendship that goes beyond the concept of collaboration and that gives the collaboration an even more involving breath and chemistry. We are so different (she gives all of herself on a stage, I work in the shadows), yet we are on exactly the same wavelength.
If you could work with, or perform alongside any artist living or passed, who would it be?
Most artists say that if they weren’t artists they would be mailmen/women… what would you be?
A mathematician. Or an astrologer. Or more simply an “art expert”, who teaches, writes, talks about art (I’m cheating: I already do this). 😉
What can we expect from you in the near future? Any upcoming projects or gigs in the pipeline that you would like to tell us about?
After the upcoming release of my new album “La parole”, there will soon my first live tour as an electronic musician and new record projects…
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