Originally posted at A CLOSER LISTEN


Un Paese Vuol Dire Mix by Lostchildrennetlabel on Mixcloud

I’ve been really pleased with the mixes that have been produced for this series, as they often break the mold by doing something more creative than just throwing together a bunch of tracks.  “Un Paese Vuol Dire…” is this special kind of a mix.  Gianmarco Del Re, a writer for Fluid Radio and the man behind the Postcards from Italy series has been on my radar for a while now.  There are only so many of us who regularly write about Italian experimental music (in English), and so I was both pleased and a bit threatened by how consistently good Gianmarco’s coverage has been.  I invited him to share with us whatever he wanted, and he delivered.   Gianmarco has prepared a powerful mix exploring the concept of identity linked to that of place by focusing on sound recordings of areas in Italy affected by earthquakes, landslides and man-made environmental disasters, interspersed with music that explores space and meaning in other ways.  He combines soundscapes, field-recordings, interviews, segments from TV programs, and even some music drawn from his personal collection of LPs from the ’50s to the ’70s.  Enjoy.  (Joseph Sannicandro)

Un Paese Vuol Dire Mix by Lostchildrennetlabel on Mixcloud

LCNL 015: Un Paese Vuol Dire Mix by Gianmarco Del Re


Besides being a writer for Fluid Radio, who are you?  How did you become interested in writing about music, or interested in experimental music in general?

My involvement with Fluid Radio and all things electro-acoustic is quite recent and is all down to Pascal Savy and Dan Crossley.  I started the Postcards from Italy series as a way of exploring a scene that I knew very little about and I have been amazed by the standard and the variety of music I have been encountering. Of course it is misleading to talk about a “scene” as such and to try and group together people with very different approaches. Also, it’s not about nationalism or flying the flag, but many of these artists work with field recordings and finding how the territory can shape somebody’s work has been a fascinating journey. Works like Ennio Mazzon’s Celadon, which started out as an audio documentary on the river Piave in Northern Italy, or the collective album Loud Listening recorded in four different factories in Italy by Alessio Ballerini, con_cetta, Enrico Coniglio and Attilio Novellino, are fascinating ways of reconfiguring the country’s soundscape and offer new ways of understanding the environment. The good people from AIPS, the Italian Archive of Soundscapes, are now currently working on an a Postcards from Italy album while I am hoping to produce a DVD.

Can you explain a bit of what’s going on in “Un Paese Voul Dire…” (The Village means…) to help put it in context?

With this mixtape I wanted to approach the concept of identity linked to that of place by focusing on areas affected by earthquakes, landslides and man-made environmental disasters. Several different things seem to happen in the wake of such tragedies. Local communities get divided, and this has happened almost across the board, from the Vajont region in Veneto to Cavallerizzo, a small Albanian village in Calabria. When an earthquake struck the Belice Valley in Sicily in the late 60s, the first thing the authorities did was to issue passports and ship the inhabitants abroad. There are now bigger communities of people from Belice in Australia, for instance, that can still be found locally. There are also Italian communities in Toronto, made of immigrants from so called ghost villages in Calabria, which the Italian anthropologist Vito Teti masterfully details in his books Il Senso dei Luoghi and Pietre di Pane.

Another worrying trend is to seal off the affected areas and relocate the people to newtowns, which allows the usual suspects to make huge profits. I am not condemning the idea of newtowns in itself. Indeed a district like that of the Garbatella in Rome was built along the lines of the British Garden Cities of the early XX century and it is one of the very few successful examples of urban regeneration in Rome. Alas, Rome is paradigmatic in terms of the ongoing destruction of the territory in Italy, with precious farmland being converted into urban areas by property developers who also happen to own national newspapers and have family ties with some very influential politicians. All urban planning rules and regulations are routinely flaunted, which results in whole new districts springing up almost overnight with no infrastructure as the work of the urbanist Paolo Berdini exposes.

All this has far reaching consequences. When an earthquake struck the town of San Giuliano di Puglia in Molise, 27 schoolchildren and a teacher died because builders hadn’t complied to building standards regulations. The same happened with the student hall in L’Aquila. Alas, Italy is a country, where they use toxic waste for schools and houses in Crotone, in Calabria, while asbestos is mixed with tarmac to build new roads in Lombardy. Unfortunately both the right and the left are conniving in this situation, which, with upcoming elections leaves very few voting options.

There are hundreds of empty flats on the outskirts of Rome and yet more are being built everyday. Virtually whole villages are up for sale all over Italy while more and more houses are being built in the countryside. As Ludovico Corrao, the former mayor of Gibellina says in the interview excerpt which I included, “A group of houses does not make a city.”

Leandro Pisano has done some stellar work with sound artists in Irpinia, a region heavily affected by a devastating earthquake in 1980. Also, Pietro Riparbelli’s soundrecordings taken in three of L’Aquila’s churches, with the sound of pigeons flapping their wings in the eerie silence, are a sad reminder that four years after the earthquake, a whole city of almost 70,000 people still lies in ruins.

With Sounds from Dangerous Places, John Cusack asks the question, “What can we learn of dangerous places by listening to their sound?” This is a question I would personally like to see addressed more often by Italian artists and musicians, who would have so much raw material to work with. It is not an approach that might suit everybody and I am not making an outright call for “politically engaged art” or music with a message. I am with Giuseppe Ielasi in this when he says in a recent interview with Tokafi, “I know this will appear very simplistic, but I think that choosing to work within a non-mainstream system, self-releasing records (or releasing them on like-minded labels), playing low budget concerts is a choice that has very strong social implications. I’m not interested in using the word ‘artist’. What we do has much more to do with small scale economy, sustainability and the necessity to remain an independent individual.” Personally, though, I would still welcome the occasional work of “sonic journalism.”
Thanks again Gianmarco.


Danilo Dolci – “Radio Libera Partinico” – Archivi Sonori a cura dell’Istituto Ernesto De Martino (1970) – 00:00:00:00 | 00:00:48:00

Con_Cetta – “t3rrarum: – unreleased (2013) – 00:00:00:00 | 00:04:56:11

Danilo Dolci – “Radio Libera Partinico” – Archivi Sonori a cura dell’Istituto Ernesto De Martino (1970) – 00:03:14:20 | 00:04:23:00

Pino Veneziano – “Lu Patroni” – Lu patroni è suvecchiu – (Ottobre 2008) – 00:04:33:22 | 00:07:08:10

Tiziano Milani – “Centro Città” – The City of Simulation – Setola di Maiale (2011) – 00:07:08:10 | 00:11:39:21

Danilo Dolci – “Radio Libera Partinico” – Archivi Sonori a cura dell’Istituto Ernesto De Martino (1970) – 00:08:14:18 | 00:09:19:14

Danilo Dolci – “Radio Libera Partinico” – Archivi Sonori a cura dell’Istituto Ernesto De Martino (1970) – 00:09:22:15 | 00:09:39:14

Danilo Dolci – “Radio Libera Partinico” – Archivi Sonori a cura dell’Istituto Ernesto De Martino (1970) – 00:11:05:00 | 00:11:53:16

Danilo Dolci – “Radio Libera Partinico” – Archivi Sonori a cura dell’Istituto Ernesto De Martino (1970) – 00:10:30:16 | 00:10:45:17

Elio Martusciello – “Musical Exile” – Lontano (Homage to Giacinto Scelsi) – Stefano Tedesco Productions (2010) – 00:11:45:13 | 00:16:49:21

Ludovico Corrao – interview with Manuele Bonaccorsi – 00:16:38:18 | 00:17:54:09

Yasuhiro Morinaga – “Ear of Dyonisis” – Sceneries from the Castellated Wall – Galaverna (2012) – 00:17:54:09 | 00:22:22:19

Giuseppe Milano – “L’eruzione dell’Etna (excerpt)” – Le notizie cantate – La Nuova Fonit Cetra (1997) – 00:21:29:00 | 00:23:32:22

Andrea Valle “Sopra l’archibugiar in valle / III / a lo scoppiar” – Acta GeoGraphica (2001-2007) – Ripples Recordings (2012) – 00:23:38:01 | 00:25:10:12

Stefano Pilia – “La Favilla” – Altri Giardini, VV.AA. – (2010) – 00:25:06:15 | 00:30:04:11

Documenti sonori del maggio 1976 – Il terremoto in Friuli, Maggio 1976 – Studio AVF Nimis – (1976) – 00:30:04:11 | 00:35:07:14

Zbeen – “Skyr Stillheten” – Stasis – Entr’acte (2012) – 00:31:14:09 | 00:35:07:14

Bruno Rosettani – “Tu sei del mio paese” – Festival di Sanremo – Seeco (1958) – 00:34:59:14 | 00:38:21:14

Poesie di Pasolini da “La meglio gioventù” e Amedeo Giacomini da “Tiare pesante” dette da Eddy Bortolussi – Il terremoto in Friuli, Maggio 1976 – Studio AVF Nimis 1976 – 00:38:16:18 | 00:40:08:03

MB / Hue / Fhievel – “Erimos [excerpt]” – Erimos – Digitalis Industries (2007) – 00:39:43:16 | 00:43:55:15

Fabio Selvafiorita / Valerio Tricoli – “Death by Water (excerpt)” – S/T – Die Schachtel (2010) – 00:43:41:15 | 00:48:17:14

Vittorio De Seta – title-track from  Diario di un maestro  (1973) 00:47:43:05 | 00:48:08:01

Gridshape – “Progression through transmutation” – Gridshape – Nephogram (2012) – 00:48:03:20 | 00:53:26:14

Alessio Ballerini – “Noir” – Blanc – Zymogen (2010) – 00:53:12:03 | 00:56:26:13

Le voci degli abitanti di Erto e di Casso – La strage del Vajont 1963 (excerpt) interviews –  00:56:11:13 | 00:56:43:24

Nonò Salamone – “L’omu e la natura” – Focu Ardenti – Navarra (2008) – 00:56:43:24 | 00:57:21:05

Le voci degli abitanti di Erto e di Casso – La strage del Vajont 1963 (excerpt) interviews – 00:57:20:05 | 00:57:57:21

Andrea Valle – “Sopra l’archibugiar in valle – VII-c’a la valle s’invola” – Acta GeoGraphica (2001-2007) – Ripples (2012) – 00:57:39:08 | 01:00:08:28

Giulio Aldinucci – “Novantesimo Minuto” – unreleased – 00:59:58:08 | 01:01:18:09

Simultan – “patiIch bin bei dir – Resting Bell (2008) – 01:01:18:09 | 01:09:02:09

Newscast from San Giuliano di Puglia (2002) – 01:07:13:02 | 01:08:47:23

Giovanna Marini / Patrizia Nasini / Francesca Breschi / Patrizia Bovi – “Pauli / Madonuta” – Cantata per Pierpaolo Pasolini – Nota (2001) – 01:08:50:16 | 01:11:41:14

Leastupperbound + Attilio Novellino – “Trying to Evaporate” – unreleased – 01:11:30:21 | 01:15:20:21

Stella De SantisTo Paisaci Mu (Il Mio Paesello – Canti in Griko) (excerpt)” – Il Salento di Giovanna Marini – Aramirè (2004) – 01:15:00:15 | 01:15:38:03

Yasuhiro Morinaga – “For La Donnaccia” – Sceneries from the Castellated Wall – Galaverna (2012) – 01:15:22:02 | 01:16:11:08

Luminance Ratio – “Reoccurring Dreams” – 7″ Series: Steve Roden – Fratto9 Under The Sky 2012 01:15:23:11 | 01:20:25:02

Giovanna Iurato news interview Abruzzo 24 ore tv (2009) – 01:16:55:07 | 01:17:13:14

Guido Bertolaso interview with Iuliano Alfredo (2005) – 01:20:06:08 | 01:20:38:12

Italian Soundscapes III Melpignano 24.08.2012 – unreleased (2012) – 01:20:19:10 | 01:21:02:07

Francesco Piscicelli and Pierfrancesco Gagliardi phone tapping recording  (2009) – 01:20:59:05 | 01:21:26:20

Pietro Riparbelli – “Collemaggio 5″Santa Maria di Collemaggio, L’Aquila (After the earthquake) (2011) 01:21:21:24 | 01:22:23:04

Gigliola Cinquetti – “Un paese vuol dire” – Pensamentos de mulher – CBS (1978) –  01:21:55:02 | 01:25:13:11

Pierpaolo Pasolini Pasolini e la forma della città, a cura di Paolo Brunatto, Rai Tre (1974) – 01:25:08:19 | 01:25:45:19

Øe – “Seadawn (excerpt)” – Transfer – Murmur Records (2012) –  01:25:18:08 | 01:28:52:12

Field recordings Sarno landslide 1998 – 01:28:26:06 | 01:29:31:07

Pino Veneziano – “Ma che vonnu”Lu patroni è suvecchiu – (Ottobre 2008) – 01:29:28:16 | 01:31:56:16

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