"Alkemijski trijumf suvremene konkretne i avangardne muzike".
Composed in Berlin and Munich, 2011/2013.
A former version of Miseri Lares was originally presented in 2011 at the festival "l'Audible" (Paris), curated by Jerome Noetinger.
It has been 7 years since ''Meta programming from within the eye of the storm', the last solo full length release by Valerio Tricoli. In the years between he has established himself as a formidable presence on the international experimental live circuit and released acclaimed collaborations with Antoine Chessex, 'Coi Tormenti' (Dilemma Records, 2010) and Thomas Ankersmit, 'Forma II' (PAN, 2011) along with the fifth full length release by his band with fellow Italiancohorts 3/4HadBeenEliminated, 'Oblivion' (Die Schachtel, 2010). Throughout these shows, collaborations and ongoing explorations Valerio has developed upon his signature style of beautifully unsettling Musique Concrète. The result of his tireless explorations, 'Miseri Lares' is his magnum opus, a multi layered and heavily nuanced work which epitomises the uncanny in the realm of sound.
'Miseri Lares' explores a variety of interlocking themes and sonic tapestries that combine in a quietly disturbing and deeply existential work. As a contemporary take on Musique Concrète Tricoli utilises his full explorations of the Revox tape recorder alongside digital processing whilst retaining all of the mystery and surprise elements found in the classic approach of pioneers such as Bernard Parmegiani, Eugeniusz Rudnik and Michel Chion.
Themes of the internal, represented by both the psychological and the physical, play throughout the record. A mind lays waste to it's own self abasement the immediate surrounds (casa or 'home') feeds on the collapse of the individual. As a symbol of spirits preying on the grief within, haunting wisps of sound swirl around a throbbing bass in 'Hic Labor Ille Domus et Inextricabilis Error', whereas 'La Casa Deviata' emphasises the paranoid structure as looming creaks make way for abandoned pipes and a cloud of escaping water. Here, the tension at play is injected with a treated dictaphone recording: "Tell me what happened","I can't remember… THE SMELL!!! There was a tape recorder, where is the tape"?
Spoken text (Italian and English) appears throughout the record, mostly as texture or as a dehumanised floorboard A play on the albums themes of the psychological, emotional and irrational horror within. Texts by Italian poets Dante and Guido Ceronetti appear alongside excerpts from The Ecclesiastes (in hebrew, Qohelet), H.P. Lovecraft, E. M. Cioran, and writings by Tricoli himself. These add an extra weight to the recording, making it reminiscent of Robert Ashley or even the comedic tragedy of later day Scott Walker (baritone aside).
Valerio Tricoli's release for PAN adds another piece to the puzzle of narrative based concrete music, yet deviating from all conventional forms and playing out like a literary form of unsettling sound sculpture. - press.morrmusic.com/distribution/release/press/id/1794
An astonishing set of Concrète pieces hugely recommended if you're in awe of Bernard Parmegiani - presented in a double 140g vinyl set mastered and cut by Rashad Becker at D&M, housed in pro press jacket and a silk-screened PVC sleeve with photography by Trainanos Pakioufakis and artwork by Bill Kouligas** An alchemical triumph of modern concrete and avant-garde composition, Valerio Tricoli's 5th album, 'Miseri Lares' is one of the most remarkable records in PAN's distinguished catalogue. The Italian artist's first solo LP in seven years is the culmination of tireless experimentation in studio and live arenas - he's got a formidable reputation on the experimental live circuit both solo and in the band 3/4HadBeenEliminated - and pays testament to his adroit instrumental skill and virtuosic electronic processing. It's his magnum opus - a definitive work characterised by incalculably complex construction and a haunting sense of spirit and narrative which is all too often intangible or elusive in this area of the sonic map. His bewildering alloys of atomised acoustic textures and cut-up vocals are at once jaw-droppingly unreal and disturbingly visceral, matching the oneiric strategy and dramaturgy of Robert Ashley with the sort of precise, pointillist dynamics associated with Bernard Parmegiani and the visual analogues of H.R. Giger. Weaving texts by Italian poets Dante and Guido Ceronetti along with excerpts from The Ecclesiastes, H.P. Lovecraft, E.M. Cioran, and his own writings within the fabric of its eight extended pieces, the scale of Tricoli's ambition and vision can't be sniffed at. But more importantly it's the way he so vividly, affectively invokes the unknown and states of psychological panic that will resonate beyond experimental circles and into the listening lives of soundtrack fans, sound designers and inquisitive ears looking for unpredictable, powerful, and mind-bending new sensations and ideas. This is what we feel PAN to be all about, presenting challenging, spectacular work that transcends borders. - boomkat
On his second solo album and debut full-length for PAN, Valerio Tricoli conjures an atmospheric tension that’s deeply unsettling. The horror and the precision he presents hang in the air, like a piercing scream behind soundproof doors that you can feel for hours after you’ve entered a now abandoned room. Miseri Lares (or Wretched House) isn’t bound to its 77-minute duration; instead, it opens a long-lasting, claustrophobic headspace that’s alive with haunted objects. It’s everything you fear, but that you can’t do without — a conniving Stockholm syndrome for the soul.
For Tricoli, environment is essential. His technical setup alters drastically depending on the space he performs in, which essentially has an impact on the catalog of sounds he works with and the manner in which they are processed. One of the curious aspects of Miseri Lares is that clipped aural fragments become the driving force in shaping that milieu. Although the source recordings are often free and accidental, Tricoli spends a great deal of time working on them afterward to achieve his desired effect: as he told addlimb, “the raw material is improvised, with a lot of post-production techniques, overdubs and experiments with the studio itself.” It’s because of these compositional accomplishments — capturing sound in such a precise way before deforming and then arranging it with a seductive mastery — that Tricoli is a pioneer in his field.
As an artist, as a sculptor of sound, Tricoli demonstrates an ear for creating moments of surprise and anxiety, which has brought him to great acclaim in what PAN describes as “the international experimental live circuit.” Although his approach might appear distinct and personal, the Sicily-born artist has recently focused his recorded output on collaborations. In 2010, he worked with Antoine Chessex on Coi Tormenti before following that up with Thomas Ankersmit on Forma II, which came a year later. Both recordings illustrate Tricoli’s gift at markedly altering the mood of a piece by means of the slightest intervention, a complicated and refined skill that has been executed perfectly on this latest release.
(Photo: Susanna Bolle)
The playback experience is overwhelming, with a continual dread of being caught off-guard by Tricoli’s fragmented narrative. Even though the album is made up of gloom-ridden, ambient tones that emerge through looping, magnetic tape reels, the recordings are spliced with menacing voices and butchered poetry. There are bangs, crashes, and knocks, all acoustic effects brought to life as they circulate between spools. But it’s the use of mundane, inanimate objects for instrumentation that gives each sound its clout, a gripping impression that presses you ever closer to an imagined line of fire.
Despite the concrète credentials harbored within, Miseri Lares is also a profound musical experience in a more conventional sense. Each track is driven by an atonal whir or a hushed static that fills the objects exposed here with a haunting preponderance. The shock and astonishment they induce come from the percussion, the rhythm, and even the melody that stems from each one of these exquisitely framed soundscapes, exposing drama and elegance comparable to an intricate orchestral symphony. The patient stirs of “Error” are delicately explored by scratches and bass: fingernails clawing through reams of tape. The metallic echoes and stretching of coiled springs on “In The Eye Of The Cyclone” brilliantly showcase Tricoli’s ability to construct a specific, sinister disposition. Where other artists might exemplify an enthusiasm for reimagining day-to-day objects through a virtual lens, Tricoli drags his audience back into a reality that’s brittle, potent, and a reflection of the way he operates his machines.
I first saw Tricoli perform at Café Oto with Rashad Becker — who mastered this LP — and Ashley Paul. The peculiar assembly of apparatus that Tricoli had in front of him was not only responsible for bringing his ideas to life, but also an integral part of his performance. His movements were quick and sharp as he tinkered with his gear, so agile were his inflections that his body appeared an extension of the machines he’d brought along that evening. He breathed with the music, which engulfed him in the same way that this album engulfs its listeners — for instance, with the rushes of steam and collapse of mechanical components on “Das Schräg Haus.” The ritual of his live performance is ingrained within the sounds he presents here, and the results make for a fascinating connection between bodily movement, equipment, and the places used to capture the source material.
As a breathtaking whole, the album depicts a space that’s at once familiar and ethereal. Each rap at the door, each muffled command is brimming with character as an illustration of pitch black corridors, creaking staircases, and derelict dining rooms. Something terrible has happened in this setting, but the only evidence lies in the physical objects that reside here. They tell a story assembled subjectively through the mind of the listener. Demented whispers, citations from Dante, and multilingual dialogues are neither obvious nor over dramatized; Tricoli ensures that the experience, for which the listener is ultimately accountable, remains spectacularly real.
Miseri Lares invites its audience to explore each sonic crevice on their own terms. The messages within are not dictated; they are disjointed and secretive, pointing to clues but never revealing their true meaning. In this respect, the album is exhausting; the listener becomes enticed by their own fascination, which consumes their energy while altering the relationships they form with each resonance. Upon returning to the album, each clue seems to shift, to mutate into a cold and vacant mirage. Nothing here is what it seems, except for Tricoli’s dexterity. To appreciate these sensations and to dwell in the pleasure that they bring is almost as disturbing as the sounds themselves. The thought of returning to Miseri Lares is terrifying, but it’s also inevitable, because it never really lets you go. -