This is the first release ever to diffuse the work of Teresa Rampazzi (1914-2001), a pioneer of electronic and computer music who was among the founders of the Centro Di Sonologia Computazionale in Padua, an important association of experimental composers active in Italy. The vinyl copy in my possession differs from the digital version. The alternative track is also the most recent material on offer: 1981’s “Metamorfosi” is an intriguingly ringing sonic cloud, born from the wish of “expressing the continuous mutability of all parameters”. What’s missing instead from the CD is “Atmen Noch”. Most sincerely, this kind of collector-enticing tactic is absurd, also because the quality of the vinyl is not exceptional – pops and bumps a go go.
In truth, the notes and the excerpts from Rampazzi’s writings and interviews constitute the really interesting ingredient of this edition. We become aware of the composer’s artistic path: primarily an avant-garde pianist and choir member, she remained totally fascinated by a small frequency generator shown to her by Herbert Eimert during a course at Darmstadt. From there, this firm-minded lady went on to analyze and exploit the possibilities of similar instruments, early synthesizers and primordial computers that certainly weren’t designed for interfacing with musicians. A passionate quest for new methods of audio-making, whose fruits and testimonies were donated to the Department Of Visual Arts And Music at Padua’s University two years prior of her death.
Do not be too hopeful for unfathomable sonorities, despite the unconventionality of this woman’s spirit. The record should be played loud, in order to better enjoy at least the essential consistency of unstructured masses of frequencies and noises that don’t sound like compositions, more a series of casual occurrences without a significant impact. Some of these flashes are pretty beautiful and vaguely fascinating, others are merely subsidiary presences, lacking any kind of mystery and interest. The whole first half is dedicated to “Musica Endoscopica”, originally a soundtrack for a documentary on – that’s right – endoscopy. The other side comprises the spacey “Environ” and the fairly unformulated “With The Light Pen” – rather forgettable episodes, if you ask me. The above mentioned “Metamorfosi” is not enough to transform what’s just a somewhat weird document into a must-have. Deep respect goes to Mrs. Rampazzi’s vision and stubborn inquisitiveness, but for sure we’re not talking about a female embodiment of Roland Kayn.