Memoria Uno – …a balm for a troubled…

Memoria Uno #11 at Sala Fènix – 31st May ’16

Oriol Roca (drums)
Àlex Reviriego & Marc Cuevas (bass)
Marcel·lí Bayer (bass clarinet, tenor saxophone)
Pablo Selnik (flute)
Núria Andorrà (percussion
)
Pol Padrós (trumpet)
Oriol Fontclara (baritone saxophone)
Tom Chant (tenor & soprano saxophones)
Pablo Rega (guitar)
Agustí Fernández (piano, conduction)
Iván González (conduction, trumpet)

It occurs to me that (and this won’t be a tremendously original thought, few of my thoughts are) that the apparent chaos contained in pure improvised music is marvellous stress relief. The niggles and worries of the day-to-day, the monkey mind, are perfectly represented by the sonic maelstrom. Except there is no true chaos, at least not manmade. Form emerges – either implied or inferred – and that perception of form (however tenuous) is reassuring and soothing, bringing a suggestion of underlying order to life, a safety net.

From out of chaos comes…

…a gentle patter of a drum, the burred edge of tidal saxophone, an oscillating flute…

… a pegged and plucked bass, sonorous, deliberate, practically stately; contrasting with a vintage electric guitar, plinking sounds produced by winding or rubbing something up against the strings and pickups, and above the nut and below the bridge…

… a ‘drum battle’: several minutes of increasingly tightly bound percussion…

…and on a theme, a bass duet – low volume picking, up and down the fretboard, one long, eloquent, unpredictable phrase; accompanied by tiny textural arco flourishes, barely touching the strings…

…the sound of trumpet mutes scraped on floorboards, pine cones on a drumhead…

… all jagged, angular and fun… undertowed by the constant ripple and flow of piano – primal, urgent, even tribal, rising to savagely joyous…

— a Memoria Uno performance at its best, organic, flowing, a natural synthesis; peace found in an absence of silence.