- 1. What are your musical beginnings? Specifically, how did you decide to use your voice as your instrument? How did you pick this “instrument?”
I always enjoyed the idea of singing and of performance.
When I began, in the so-called alternative scene at the end of the ‘80s, the concept – with all the ingenuity of my seventeen-year old self – was to think outside the usual limits. This often manifested itself in the concert performance with my whole body: cuts, wounds, provocation…
2. How did the name Enomisossab come to life?
The project is based on musicality and use of voice.
Which is also a musical instrument, but not only that.
Enomìsossab sounds great but does not present any specific reference or nationality.
I almost always prefer the significant rather than the meaning of the word: language is the key to every expression but it can also be confining.
Music in itself, sublime and genius, has always been the expression of an auto-referential world.
Of an industry.
I want to get out of the supermarket.
- 2. What inspires you when you compose? What are your “bad influences”?
I listen to tons of different stuff but I don’t have a specific genre of reference/
My bad influences, with time, were exorcised; actually, I killed them.
It’s also a way of finding them again and appreciating them better – distance is sometimes a better thing.
4. Do you follow any specific method when you compose?
No, because it’s the context that makes the art.
Anyone that thinks otherwise is in denial.
Creation doesn’t exist; it’s the latest syndrome of an animal that invented, and believes in, God.
The other day I was in a bar having a coffee; at a table next to me there was a woman who I believe was speaking in an Eastern European language.
She had such a natural harmony in her voice, full but soft, much more musical than any of the crap music that the bar was playing.
See, I’m sure that, at some point, after some trial and error, even in a few months, I’ll be able to reproduce those phonems somehow, without even realizing.
5. In your albums you seem to alternate more traditional song structures with pure vocal experimentation. How do you structure your work?
But I already had in mind the drone and three stanzas, separated, or the result of an entropy of the other.
The first had ethnic references, a mishmash of dialects and lyrics.
It became tonal with an essential arrangement, dry.
The second, atonal, was pure vocal experimentation, diplophonies, glossolalia, scat – and it’s interesting that I sang it in two different sessions over four months and the timber and height of the notes were interchangable with no problems at all.
The third part was given to others, Balbo and Battistini, after stabilizing only a few coordinates: I made it mine, listening to it right before entering the studio, but without any practice. The vocal part is therefore an improvisation without any rete, on the first take, without any cuts or embellishments.
It works because you can sense and feel the emotion; the perfect execution – maybe if I had followed the usual procedure it would have come out fake and sterile.
In the mixing I added principles of numerology, the dynamics of which are inspired by the spiral, the original sense of the term.
This perseveres in my experience, from the visions of Borromini to the readings of Francesco Colonna, up to the Buzzinida theatre.
6. From a beginning where you worked mostly alone you have begun various collaborations with other artists in later albums. Is this because of a need to add “density” to your work?
“La Merce” is mostly a game of mirrors: I use, in the opening section, the improvisation of someone I greatly admire – to give color to the stanza.
In the latest part it was the others who allowed me to improvise, without worrying about form.
7. How did the collaboration happen with dancer Elisa Spagone for the video “Burattini, burattinai. E corde?” Does this open new possibilities for experimentation and collaboration with new expressive forms?
She is wonderful, great, has a lot in common with me.
She is technical, but not academic, and an incredible physicality.
“Burattini, burattinai. E corde” comes from our meeting-confrontation and from my reading of neuropsychological texts about the verbal mind.
From the banal consideration that “rabota” in the Ecclesiastical Slavic language means “slavery;” which is a prosecution of the themes found in the album.
The performance was done with the spectators around us and we would propose it to several festivals.
In the past decade the death of the actor and the stage is always more evident, even in popular culture; just think of deejays that fill arenas for concerts.
What happens en scene is pointless, the clue is the fantastical mass of the public.
Once the artist was sacred, unreachable, whereas now it is searched, courted and prized.
Even in the so-called avant garde scene they try to satisfy the crowd, who has become, in synthesis, the real protagonist.
I took part in horrible events where the music ended up as the soundtrack to the vices and technological fetishes of those participating.
This type of cocktail (or beer) entertainment took over the soul of musical exhibition.
We have to break this habit – break it into a thousand pieces.
As far as the Buzzinida, in the heart of Italy, without even taking into consideration its esoteric significance, Aleph, what matters is the sound conception of the place: built as though it were a huge harmonic amplifier.
That is the type of place I look for, with natural reverberation, to make my voice bounce off the walls.
Too many singers rely on microphones and effects; in truth it should be the uvula itself that creates the effect.
Voice is the first real electronic instrument, analog.
8. Who did you enjoy working with?
It would be more interesting to find the other collaborators and ask them if they enjoyed working with yours truly!
9. Who would you enjoy working with sometime?
I already started a collaboration for a piece of musical theater: since the subject is delicate and the project is complex, I don’t want to announce anything for fear it won’t end up coming to fruition. Knock on wood.
10. How do you consider the Italian “improvisational” scene?
Some time ago I participated in an open improvisation in Rome; I had a dialogue with Luca Miti: I sang towards the mechanical part of a vertical piano and he, with the pedals, held the sound and modulated it.
There was also a wind instrument accompanying us.
Ten minutes, maybe fifteen, of liquid voyage.
It was pretty amazing, such a delicate empathy.
Then, at a certain point, another person came in and it shattered the magic of the moment like a bull in a china shop.
Improvisation should be almost all in the learning process – continuous and progressive – and grabbing the inspiration that brings forth something inedited and “scandalous.”
To that which redefines the sound environment and gives it meaning.
If it becomes a code, it turns into a stereotype; exactly like a pop song.
It almost always becomes an inventory of patterns: wouldn’t it be better to develop the more interesting ones?
11. How do you see the international ‘improvisational’ scene?
I have a partial culture about it.
I have somewhat of a shaky opinion of contemporary music, of course rock, historically avant-garde,
the popular songs and other, folk, jazz, etc.
12. What is this opinion and who is it directed towards? Can you clear up your musical tastes for me?
Things happen with new digital means and at least it’s easier to find them now.
I was listening to an Asian woman who worked in Poland, she was very young, Ayane Yamanaka, and I found it fascinating that – while writing for a piece – she managed to capture exactly the sounds of tics, of yelps, of domestic technology which by now has invaded us all. There is parallel contemporary music, some official, some post-rock, which is exploring similar paths.
In the so-called “Bel Paese”, after thirty years of cultural degradation, there is an interesting tradition, alive and well, of research.
I see Kathodik, I read the physical address in Macerata and I think “a Voyage that never ends,” by Scodanibbio…
As far as pop references I am also quite an omnivore yet I have the bad attitude of never being able to handle the so-called “prophets of the obvious.”
I still believe in the fact that in that area you must be ugly, dirty and evil.
So, I am very attached to these genres, or categories of the soul, that are defined as “black music,” and heavy metal.
Which usually go on completely without a care in the world as to good taste or decorum.
12. The classic final question you can never avoid: How do you see your future, music, life, all the rest?
I think I’m right in the midway of this our mortal life and I don’t complain
I’ve done well so far.
Something always happens, some sort of meeting, that opens a window, a new opportunity.
I have other projects to do and we’ll see if I end up doing them.
As Frigyes Karinthy once wrote: “Reality is a product of human fantasy.”
The rest is just extra change.
* La Scarzuola is a construction developed by the artist and architect Tomaso Buzzi, in Montegiove in the comune of Montegabbione in Terni province (n. d. r.)