Alain De Filippis

Petites Musiques de Bruits

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An English translation of the title of Alain De Filippis' CD must include the Mozart pun -- therefore the best formula would be "A Little Noise Music." It is a programmatic title: the music heard on Petites Musiques de Bruits comes from classical music and musique concrète records. The dedication to the likes of Igor Stravinsky, Edgard Varèse, Erik Satie, Pierre Henry, and Frank Zappa gives an indication regarding the snippets' origins. De Filippis' collages take various forms: ripoff orchestras, sub-techno, even musique concrète itself (yes, on "Tohu-Bohu" he seems to be sampling a genre to create a piece that sticks to that genre). On this CD the technique pioneered by Christian Marclay takes an unusual form: instead of focusing on popular music or kitsch (Stock, Hausen & Walkman's Hammond-a-go-go sound sources on Organ Transplants; Martin Tétreault's cheesy cha-cha LPs on Des Pas et des Mois), there are so-called serious works -- but trying to identify them won't take you very far. Sampling orchestras is harder than using a square pop beat: the envelope and decay are not the same. De Filippis does a great job, technique-wise and aesthetic-wise. These pieces range from strangely ethereal landscapes ("Illico-Presto") to silly symphonic cut-and-paste, as in "La Grande Ouverture," one of the CD's two highlights. The other one is "Toka Tameka," in which the artist transforms the orchestra into a machine by locking it into mechanical repetitions -- one immediately sees the link between that and Zappa's "enforced recreational facility" for orchestra players in the movie 200 Motels. Highly entertaining and heartily recommended.

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