Upon Contact Reworked

Upon Contact has been recorded at Onix II Studio · Barcelona, and mastered by Taylor Deupree in NYC

All reworked tracks mastered by Ian Hawgood · Tokio
Artwork & layout by Ximena Contreras

Release date: 21 May 2015 through ad21
Limited to 500 copies

CD available:
Denovali | Norman Records | Stashed Goods

Also available digitally from: iTunes | Amazon.com | bandcamp | Spotify

Upon Contact Reworked is a collaborative work from Bruno Sanfilippo that features some of the most highly acclaimed artists from the electronic music scene including Francesco Giannico, Olan Mill, Leonardo Rosado, Jorge Haro, Quivion and Hior Chronik in which an original piece written for piano is re-envisioned by each artist.


  • A five-minute piece as a base and its six interpretations performed by the musician’s friends and acquaintances. This is the recipe for the CD of Bruno Sanfilippo from Barcelona. Short, quite charming, not necessarily essential in a global music context, but in fact pleasantly warm and soothing. Although I personally wouldn’t sell it for a full-length price. More likely I’d treat is as an EP or a bonus disc for a regular CD. The original track, “Upon Contact”, is a piano impression built on the basis of individual sounds, scraps of melody and silence. Despite being rather static, still a lot more things happen here than on the whole “Tiento De Las Nieves” by Thomas Köner. However, this fragment is minimal and leisured like a July evening over the Mediterranean Sea. The first of the musician’s colleagues, Francesco Giannico, adds just a bit of urban field recordings and a nice electronic texture, which doesn’t exactly change the colour of the composition, but makes it move from the coast to the terrace of some townhouse in Barcelona, and allows us to tenderly observes the microdramas of a beloved city. Olan Mill reinterprets Sanfilippo’s track very subtly, focusing on a delicate alteration of the original sound of the instrument rather than implementing his own new elements. With a passive listen you may not even catch the changes on the sound. But I have to say that it works. The world slows down even more, I feel sleepier and sleepier. A similar policy is applied by Leonardo Rosado by the addition of a slight touch of reverb and organic space to the track.At Jorge Haro’s interpretation we have some loops and an approach that’s a bit more experimental, but it doesn’t ruin the melancholy aspect of the original. I don’t know whether this reinterpretation isn’t the one most to my liking – perhaps because it comes the closest to the pure core of ambient music. Quivion focuses on the very same slice of “Upon Contact”, however there’s more reverb, interferences in the original form, and even some strange dynamics deep in the background. Hior Chronik comes as the last one, and he nicely fastens the whole thing together, as beyond some slightly colored electronics in the background, this interpretation probably departs the least from the initial Bruno Sanfilippo version. To be honest, if I hadn’t known I’d never have guessed that this is an album to which a number of different musicians have contributed. Sounds like the work of one artist subtly experimenting with his own work: no extravagance, no change beyond recognition. The whole sounds very well ; the original piece was mastered by Taylor Deupree , the processed ones by Ian Hawgood. A friendly, unpretentious release, but I wouldn’t buy it for the price of a normal CD. Not enough new and truly exquisite stuff.
    Santa Sandre Mag
  • Cela fait déjà quelques productions de Bruno Sanfilippo que l’on écoute. Auteur d’une musique néo-classique dans la plus pure tradition du genre, il manquait pour nous un élément nouveau susceptible de retenir notre attention, peut-être aussi une certaine profondeur. Nous avions parlé de ClarOscuro publié en 2014 en le qualifiant de disque assez classique, et nous avions du coup fait l’impasse sur Inside Life qui sortait quelques mois avant ce Upon Contact Reworked. Ce fut une surprise de trouver cette nouvelle production dans notre boite aux lettres, d’une part pour sa proximité avec l’album, d’autre part pour son approche bien différente. Pour en arriver là, l’Argentin a invité quelques amis puisque comme le titre le suggère, il s’agit d’un album de remixes autour d’un titre inédit intitulé Upon Contact. Celui-ci ouvre l’album dans un style qui nous rappelle justement le récent Inside Life. Un piano solo, très lent, des notes qui meurent en silence et parfois quelques éclats, quelques élans pour une pièce que l’on qualifiera de linéaire malgré quelques accents de gravité par endroit. Une ambient néoclassique et contemplative pour âmes mélancoliques. Vous l’aurez compris, c’est surtout la suite de l’album qui nous intéresse avec 6 relectures parmi lesquelles on retrouve notamment Olan Mill et Hior Chronik. La pièce prend tout de suite une autre dimension dès que Francesco Giannico s’en empare, y ajoutant field recordings et longs glissements de nappes. On pourra le rapprocher de Quivion avec cette fois des field recordings plus bucoliques, clapotis d’une rivière, piaillements d’oiseaux, des notes un peu noyées dans la reverb et une texture pleine de crépitement sur la fin. Olan Mill joue quant à lui sur le son, se contentant de manipuler les notes de piano, prolongées à l’infini, jouées à l’envers, tronquées, donnant l’impression d’étirer le temps. Même sentiment, mais poussé à l’extrême avec Leonardo Rosado qui cumule manipulation du piano et ajout de nappes glacées, une combinaison qui fonctionne à merveille. On saluera ensuite le travail de l’Argentin Jorge Haro qui nous propose une très belle intégration de l’électronique, entre petits frétillements métalliques, bleeps métronomiques et surprenantes pulsations de basses. Pour finir, un artiste que l’on connait très mal mais que l’on a croisé sur quelques compilations et dont le nom ne nous a pas échappé : Hior Chronik. Il est ici dans un univers contraint, mais c’est encore une fois du beau travail, habillant l’espace de field recordings et micro-sonorités tandis que le piano se répand dans un effet de reverb. On suppose que les 6 artistes participants à ce projet ont été soigneusement sélectionnés. Le résultat est une réussite qui donne au morceau de Bruno Sanfilippo de nouvelles perspectives.
  • A graceful, meditative piece, played on the piano by Bruno Sanfilippo, not a million miles away from Harold Buddland, enjoying plenty of space, leaving many notes dangling like question marks, is the point of departure for this remix disc. Francesco Giannico appears to have relocated the pianist to the midst of a bustling Italian market colonnade, a place of interesting echoes, while replacing some of Sanfilippo´s notes with velvet-smooth strings. The effect is very widescreen, Italian realist cinema in black and white. Olan Mill on the other hand becomes very intimate with the instrument itself, massaging each note, turning most of them drone purple. Leonardo Rosado, recently relocated from Portugal to Gothenburg, drastically alters the performance, making selected notes stutter in thick, curved air. Jorge Haro plucks the first two notes from the original and orbits them with a blinking satellite, until the piano begins communicating with its reprocessed self. On the most narrative piece, Quivion crosses the lines of communication, beginning in a bucolic setting, river side, draping one string of piano over the other as if weaving a carpet, until the loom has been shifted to some darker corner of the mind and takes on a sinister, industrial rhythm. Hior Chronik vents the steam off selected notes, while turning others all the way round, quietly painting a dark, sombre background quite magnificently. It is the coherent recontextualizing of each track and the selection of sensitive interpreters that makes Upon Contact Reworked all of piece, an engrossing, pleasant listening experience.
    Cyclic Defrost
  • Given the never-waning focus among classical music fans on established (and too-frequently, dead) composers, it would seem that the world of modern classical music is one of the most difficult to get a handle on – audiences are left unsure where to even begin, and composers themselves don’t get much attention or many breaks. Meanwhile, except for the occasional article devoted to film soundtrack work, the music press mostly ignores this genre entirely - perhaps due to the fact that numerous contemporary composers have adopted a “less is more” attitude when writing that has made their music largely inaccessible to mainstream audiences - but there is some sublime work out there provided one isn’t expecting the “1812 Overture” or “Beethoven’s Fifth.” A perfect example of how gorgeous modern classical can be is the music of Argentinian composer/musician Bruno Sanfilippo. Over the past few decades, Sanfilippo has explored the world of minimalist composition in search of new and unique types of music; his 2015 release Inside Life found him exploring the same sort of meditative realms that Brian Eno was exploring in the mid-to-late 1970s. Upon Contact Reworked, released later in 2015, is both more sparse in terms of its sound and more experimental in its concept, featuring a delicate original composition that’s subsequently re-imagined by six figures from the world of ambient electronic music.The rather somber “Upon Contract” plays a bit like a spiritual successor to things like Erik Satie’s “Gymnopedies No. 1” or Claude Debussy’s “Arabesque 1” since it evokes a sort of childlike wonder, but is much more ponderous and deliberate, with significantly less focus on melody. Sanfilippo’s original composition has almost agonizing stretches of silence which virtually force the listener to confront inner thoughts being inspired by the music, and the whole of the composition suggests a feeling of indecision, leaving many of its fragmentary piano themes unresolved. While most of the track utilizes the upper half of the piano’s range, accented lower notes pop up later on, providing just a hint of closure at its winds down. Considering how unimposing this original piece is, it might go without say that the half dozen alternate versions play mainly as demonstrations of how subtle changes can alter the feel and mood of music.Indistinct voices and slightly hissy “sounds of space” present in Francesco Giannico’s version seem very much at home in the context of Sanfilippo’s original track. Warmer chords are introduced under the main piano themes, establishing a noticeably more comforting vibe, but the lonely, hanging notes stick out as being even more poignant and nearly haunting at times. Reverberating low tones have been added to Olan Mill’s rework, with the droning quality of the piece suggesting that something inevitable is just about to happen. Unsurprisingly, no “a-ha” moment actually occurs, but a listener is still left with an ominous feeling. Bassy tones present in Leonardo Rosado’s version, probably the most quietly dreamy of the mixes, are more reassuring, combined with humming ethereal ambiance and an ever-so-slightly manipulated main theme that has touches of vibrato and echo applied to it.Mechanical whirr and piercing electronic beeps and buzzes make Jorge Haro’s version arguably the most distinctive track here, while Quivion’s hazy rework makes use of bubbling sound effects and noisy bird calls that actually downplay the original piano parts. Towards the end, Quivion throws in elements of static and a high-pitched howl, perhaps commenting on the way humankind is intruding into the natural world with its mechanized and increasingly robotic civilization. Similar crackling sound effects occasionally burst forth during Hior Chronik’s rework, which closes the album. The “melody” here has been slightly modified to give it a more defined sense of purpose, and the track ends with an airy fade out. Upon Contract Reworked plays out in such a low-key, slow-burning manner that I’d frankly be shocked if most people would even be aware that an ongoing album was being played while they listened to it. There’s very little for a listener to latch onto, and only extremely observant listeners would be able to point out major (or honestly,any) differences between the various tracks. As such, while I don’t think anyone would or could completely dislike what Sanfilippo and his collaborators have accomplished since the album is very pleasant to listen to, this is more something that would suit the taste of open-minded listeners and those who appreciate experimental work rather than the crowd accustomed to popular music. Ultimately, Upon Contract Reworked left me deep in thought – I think one could argue that at least part of the point of this album is to stimulate the imagination of anyone who listens to it - and though it’s not necessarily bright or cheerful, I got a sense from this very peaceful and calming music that all was right with the world. In today’s day and age, almost any music that can inspire such a response is worthwhile in my book.
    Scene Point Blank Magazine
  • "Upon Contact Reworked", released during May 2015 on ad21, is a very interesting project driven by Bruno Sanfilippo, an acclaimed Argentinian composer, who is based since 2000 in Barcelona, Spain. This collaboration features several of his colleagues across the globe, who focus on "Upon Contact", the original composition by Bruno Sanfilippo and charge it with their challenging artifices. The packaging of this CD is rather simple, it's a cardboard sleeve, but simply elegant with beautiful sparse artwork with additional insert, all designed by Bruno Sanfilippo's wife Ximena Contreras. A very nice work indeed!!! "Upon Contact Reworked" collection opens with the initial composition, "Upon Contact", recorded by Bruno Sanfilippo at his Onix II Studio and mastered by Taylor Deupree. Intimate piano nuances immediately embrace each listener with utterly gorgeous subtlety scrupulously permeated by expansive glimpses of immersing stillness. This is deeply expressive minimalism and a true aural delicacy of introspective poignancy, meticulously intermingled with the visual part of the album. Bravo!!! Italian soundscaper Francesco Giannico is the first guest, who joins Bruno Sanfilippo and brings to the table his translucent urban recordings and sweepingly gliding evocations, which are hauntingly bridged with warm piano notes. Another beauty!!! Enigmatic drones of UK's Olan Mill take Bruno Sanfilippo's composition into intensely delightful hazy serenity, where long-buried memories awake. Portuguese sound manipulator Leonardo Rosado (now domiciled in Göteborg, Sweden) safely holds the piece on intense pathway, guarded by ambiguous dronescape, smoothly undulating through hissy terrains, while elusive piano rise and fall throughout. Intricately engrossing piece!!! The next "Upon Contact" is carved by Argentinian experimental composer Jorge Haro, his name is a brand new to me. Submerging hi-tech beep sounds add a brand new feel to Bruno Sanfilippo's mesmerizingly circling piano. Some remote dub-techno-infused fragments ephemerally emerge as well. A really intriguing blend!!! Quivion is another unknown name to me, this Swedish project basically continues the route taken by Jorge Haro, it's less experimental, more organic, although later the humming drone with piano softness is continuously counterpointed with distant intangible industrial beats and rumbles. Also the last guest, Greek sculptor Hior Chronik, now residing in Berlin, is new to me. His palette of distinctively subtle glitchy-like sounds masterfully reinforces the piano magic by the main protagonist, shifts the composition into gorgeously melancholic fields and provides a really gratifying conclusion to this cooperative effort.I should add that all reworked contributions on this CD were mastered by Ian Hawgood and this collaborative work is available in a limited edition of 500 copies. For me, there is only one low point here, the length of this collection, which clocks to 37 minutes in total. I could easily imagine one or two additional reworked versions, but that's just my rough idea. Otherwise, this is a truly fruitful project exquisitely exhibiting a collective of kindred spirits within deeply expressive ambient/modern classical realms, who have masterfully enriched "Upon Contact" recording with their own distinguishing insignias. Well-done, Bruno (& Ximena), and kudos to all participating artists, you all have done a really wonderful job!!!
    Richard Gürtler
  • It has been done quite often, releasing an album containing reworked versions by other composers derived from an original composition. For "Upon Contact Reworked", Bruno Sanfilippo invited Francesco Giannico, Olan Mill, Leonardo Rosado, Jorge Haro, Quivion and Hior Chronik respectively to put their hands, insights and skills to "Upon Contact", a spacious, acoustic, Satie-esque piano piece of overall tranquility. After introducing the gentle basic piece, the music starts to float into electronic textural environs with occasional environmental sounds, always treating the initial mood most delicate, respectful, imaginative and subtle. I really came to appreciate the introspective, transparent and smooth evolving sound current displayed in each of the "remixed" pieces. The version of Quivion features a desolate, slightly foreboding feel without becoming uncomfortable. The project comes full circle on the last track which connects almost seamlessly to the original acoustic version. All in all, the 37-minute "Upon Contact Reworked" offers reflective and cohesive ambient musings with a delightful stillness filling its core along lots of space found between the notes.
  • It's not unusual for an artist to release a remix set or equivalent as a way of tiding listeners over from one full-length to another, and it's in that spirit that Bruno Sanfilippo follows his recent Inside Life album with Upon Contact Reworked, a collaborative collection that sees a piano-based setting by the composer re-interpreted by well-respected figures from the electronic scene. On this thirty-seven-minute release, Francesco Giannico, Olan Mill, Leonardo Rosado, Jorge Haro, Quivion, and Hior Chronik all take individual stabs at Sanfilippo's original. The lead-off track is, naturally, “Upon Contact,” a prototypical Sanfilippo work of graceful character that resembles a slightly less gauzy Harold Budd recording. Sanfilippo exercises his customary restraint in adding little more to the piece's minimal piano chords than heavy doses of reverb. That “Upon Contact” is so minimal in design proves to be a positive for the contributors as it allows them ample room to impose their own respective stamps upon it.Giannico includes strings to amp up the original's dramatic quality, though the most dominant additions are field recordings of robust human activity. Olan Mill and Hior Chronik offer delicate treatments that artfully recast the original as electronically tinted tapestries of varying colours, while the bold electronic re-imaginings by Rosado, Haro, and Quivion augment Sanfilippo's piano notes with clusters of stuttering ripples, sonar blips, and combustion. While each version is different, the serene ambiance of the original resounds within each as a connecting thread.Yes, Upon Contact Reworked is a stopgap of sorts designed to ease the transition from Inside Life to Sanfilippo's next full-length, but it's no less satisfying a collection for being so. At the very least, it's fascinating to hear the different ways by which the contributors deconstruct and re-create the composer's original.
  • Ambient piano and subtle electronica. Upon Contact consists of the Bruno Sanfilippo original recording followed by six re-imaginings of the piece by various renowned electronic/ambient artists. This format provides the album with a striking unity of sound that is further maintained by the remix/rework versions not straying too far from the original - just far enough to provide sufficient variety. Bruno Sanfilippo's own Upon Contact is spacious, elegant and beautifully melancholy. Notes hang in ample space, reverberating introspectively, unhurried and brimming with emotion. Francesco Giannico, Olan Mill, Leonardo Rosado, Jorge Haro, Quivion and Hior Chronik each then present their unique takes on this delightful source material. Atmospheric disturbances and crackle along with voice fragments embellish the dreamy piano; soft drones and more sonorous resonance seep into the emptiness; the notes are elongated, effected, eroded, repeated; bright beeps, faint creaks, moving water and industrial atmospheres enfold the melody. This is a highly absorbing neo-classical release that will fill your late nights with gentle wonder. ARTWORK A refined card wallet presentation, Upon Contact comes in a single-panel sleeve with a simple insert. The warm grey cover presents title information aptly amid a graphic design of musical symbols both traditional and contemporary. Contributing artists are listed on the front and again more prominently on the reverse. The single sheet insert has a repeat of the bold cover graphic on one side and track details with timings on the other. Brief thanks and recording information complete the layout. OVERALL This gracefully serene thirty-seven minute release follows on the heels of the recent Inside Life album. In general, classically trained Spanish musician/composer Bruno Sanfilippo focuses his attention in varying degrees upon minimalist piano music and electro-acoustic experimentation. Upon Contact draws these threads together neatly through the contributions of some top names in the ambient-electronic field. The six reworked tracks add or subtract little in the way of time from the original, all running less than a minute variance. The CD is a limited edition of 500 and there is unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality downloads available in MP3, FLAC and more. Explore this delightful project via Bandcamp.
    Morpheus Music
  • The new album of the Argentine-Spanish composer Bruno Sanfilippo contains only one instrumental track: Upon Contact. You hear Sanfilippo's version first and then the reworkings by 6 different electro artists, among others, the Italian soundscape artist Francesco Giannico, the neoclassical/ambiente duo Olan Mill and the Argentine sound magician Jorge Haro. The result is again a very atmospheric and dreamy neoclassical album for late night, which combines piano and electronics in an almost perfect way. Sanfilippo's version opens the album with echoing piano sounds, neatly separated, with space for quiet contemplation, followed by a cautious progress of two times three tones and then a short series of emphatic sounds, before the melody unfolds in a delicate way, friable and phased and then playful, but always minimalist and meditative, to which Francesco Giannico in his revised version, adds men's and children's voices, abrasive and creaking noises, and then fills the void with a soft whirring electronic drone as the soundtrack for a fortuitous and surprising film fragment. Olan Mill adds dark colors from the beginning. The deep piano tones resonate more and the quiet moments are filled with a soft vibrating drone sound, fragile and disturbing, and in the background shrill violin-like effects.Leonardo Rosado first introduces a soft humming drone and then the piano sound, which has been stretched and finally flows together with the drone. Halfway through, the drones sound more emphatic and dark, but they never dominate the sound palette in which the piano sound of the original composition always remains clearly in the foreground. Jorge Haro does it differently, because in his reworking the piano is only introduced after 60 seconds. He uses noise, regular short beep sounds and gurgling drones before the original composition seeps through. Nevertheless, he remains closest to the original tune because what he adds, is minimalist and subaltern.The Swedish Quivon adds the sound of rushing water and little sounds to the tune of Sanfilippo, perhaps of small birds, and finally a distant drone of an industrial nature as of a factory or a steel mill and a lot of atmospheric noise. The Greek ambient artist Hior Chronik uses soft noise and barely audible creaks. A very minimalist approach which still affects the mood of the composition.Upon Contact (Reworked) by Bruno Sanfilippo, has a classical composition format in which the same piece of music is treated in different ways. 37 wonderful minutes, adorned by the cooperating guest musicians with sober electronic and organic sounds, without damaging the intent of the original composition. Beautiful album.
    Peek-A-Boo Magazine
  • Though the album is presented as if it were a remix-album (and in fact it also ís), the basic track is not taken from a previous release from Bruno Sanfilippo‘s extensive discography. The title track and opener of Upon Contact Reworked is a new composition which is the basis for further reworks, reconstructions and remixes by different artists. Upon Contact (the original) is a very quiet, satie-esque piano composition, leaving a lot of space for the notes to breathe.The title track is then reworked by Francesco Giannico, Olan Mill, Leonardo Rosado, Jorge Haro, Quivion and Hior Chronik respectively.I assume the contributors have never met while making this album, but judged by the resulting tracks on this album they must’ve been communicating telepathically. All of the remixing artists have added their own views and watermarks, but overall they kept very close to the original atmosphere. There are no disturbing exceptions or exceptions that break the spell.But still: you can hear the subtle differences in every approach; the acoustic piano composition slowly morphing into more electronic areas before returning to the sound of the piano in the closing Hior Chronik version.There are quite a lot remix compilations floating around, but rarely have they been presented as a conceptual unity like this album, which feels like it could’ve been the work of one single artist. I guess that proves the strength of the original underlying composition of Upon Contact.
  • Bruno Sanfilipo is an ivory tinkler who specialises in meandering, wistful notes that luxuriate in acres of melancholy spaciousness, with his foot firmly placed on the piano’s sustain pedal so that the notes hang plaintively in the air. This album features his five minute piece, ‘Upon Contact’ in its original form and then reworked by a series of electronic music producers, who do various thinks such as add field recordings, embellish the skeletal chord structure of the original with atmospheric textures or resample the original to add layers of subtle complexity. It’s hard not to compare Bruno’s music to that of masters of this style of playing, like Ryuichi Sakamoto or Harold Budd. For me Sanfilipo’s style seems warmer, more romantic somehow, in comparison to the crystalline quality of Sakamoto’s playing or Budd’s introspective restraint. All the reworkings here are very respectful of Sanfilipo’s style and are careful to enhance the original track rather than give it a radical overhaul. My preference is for the more ‘electronic’ tracks here, like Jorge Haro’s version, which sets up a shimmering insect trickle that breaths beneath an abstracted snippet of the original piano; reminding me of Alva Noto’s more reflective ambient moments.Unfortunately though, the repetition of the same motifs and rather ponderous spaciousness does feel a tad cloying to me, but if you love piano driven melancholia laced with atmospheric electronics, you will probably love this.
    Norman Records
  • Bruno Sanfilippo è un pianista 50enne, nato a Buenos Aires ma trasferitosi a Barcellona, di eccellente caratura tecnica e di grande raffinatezza nel tocco che, di lavoro in lavoro, di pubblicazione in pubblicazione, sembra sempre più proteso verso la ricerca di quella che potremmo definire “l’essenza del pianoforte”: cioè la capacità di emozionare, suggestionare, coinvolgere l’ascoltatore anche soltanto semplicemente con due accordi e con il silenzio tra essi, o con la breve reiterazione di una nota, o persino riverberando la vibrazione dei martelletti sulle corde. Se nel precedente album “Inside Life” Sanfilippo arricchiva i propri costrutti mediante il contributo di strumenti ad arco o di sonorità elettroniche, con questo nuovo “Upon Contact Reworked”, che esce soltanto a pochi mesi di distanza dal disco che lo ha preceduto, intraprende un interessante percorso, del tutto diverso. Egli infatti esegue una singola composizione, intitolata Upon Contact, appunto, per solo piano, nella quale la rarefazione delle atmosfere è estrema, dopodichè la affida alle mani di sei sapienti produttori, affinchè mettano in essa il loro contributo. Il risultato è un prodotto concepito e inciso a Barcellona, masterizzato a New York e rielaborato a Tokyo. La prima delle sette tracce è, ovviamente, così come è stata pensata dall’autore, ed è caratterizzata dall’uso di pesanti riverberi che creano una sorta di legame tra gli accordi, molto distanti tra loro. Questi effetti, sui toni medi, sembrano quasi arrivare a trasformare il suono del piano, conferendogli una solennità quasi organistica. Francesco Giannico fa “precipitare” il pianoforte in mezzo alla strada, converte una traccia ambient in vera e 91YIHSsyHLL._SY470_propria musica concreta: possiamo sentire le voci, i passi delle persone, la vita intorno a ciò che prima sembrava uno studio deserto. Olan Mill segue il percorso nettamente opposto: ricerca la glacialità, enfatizza molto le frequenze basse, rallenta tutto il brano fino a farlo durare 40 secondi in più. Se Giannico trasformava la traccia in qualcosa di “urbano”, Leonardo Rosado sembra portarla in mezzo alla natura, con un lavoro sul fruscio e sui riverberi rovesciati che sembra un vento in un bosco. Jorge Haro è probabilmente colui che si discosta di più dalla traccia originale: i suoi trattamenti elettronici creano loop distorti e taglienti. Dopo la strada, il gelo, il vento, Quivion immerge il pianoforte nell’acqua: il lavoro sugli echi fa davvero pensare a un mondo sommerso, mentre il tutto è circondato dallo sciabordìo dei flutti. Al contrario, in questo caso, la traccia è accelerata fino a durare quasi un minuto in meno. Chiude la rassegna Hior Cronic, con una realizzazione fortemente improntata sulle capacità tecniche del reverse reverb, al quale vengono aggiunte altre elaborazioni elettroniche.
  • Quello di “Upon Contact Reworked” è un interessante esperimento di rimaneggiamento a più mani, presentata in forma organica accanto alla composizione originale, qualcosa dunque di concettualmente unitario e destinato proprio a una fruizione in sequenza, che permette di cogliere analogie e differenze nel modo in cui materia sonora viene di volta in volta plasmata. La composizione originale è un pièce pianistica di Bruno Sanfilippo, che si snoda per poco più di cinque minuti tra brevi aperture armoniche e sospensioni temporali che sembrano fatte apposta per lasciare degli spazi vuoti nei quali le complementari sensibilità di altri artisti possano inserirsi.Eppure, le sei rielaborazioni di “Upon Contact”, affidate ad altrettanti artefici di sperimentazioni tra neoclassicismo e ambient music, sono tutte molto discrete e rispettose dell’originale, forse anche proprio per la loro collocazione in sequenza, con i field recordings di Francesco Giannico che riempiono gli spazi amplificando le risonanze delle note pianistiche le saturazioni droniche di Olan Mill che le avvolgono in una marea in graduale innalzamento, resa lieve e rilucente da Leonardo Rosado.Ancor di più basso profilo gli interventi di Jorge Haro e Quivion, limitati a esili screziature elettroniche, mentre particolarmente emblematica è la rilettura conclusiva del pezzo ad opera di Hior Chronik, che con sensibilità a sua volta da pianista amplifica gli accenti notturni del brano di Sanfilippo, coronando con la sua coerenza un’operazione più stimolante dal punto di vista concettuale che produttiva di significativi effetti da quello della resa sonora.
    Music won't save you
  • Music that doesn’t fit between defined borders“ – Selbstbewusster könnte der aus Buenos Aires stammende Komponist Bruno Sanfilippo sein Schaffen auf der Facebook-Seite wohl nicht beschreiben. Dass er sich mit dieser Aussage etwas weit aus dem Fenster lehnt, zeigt hingegen das aktuelle Werk „Upon Contact Reworked“. Das Album besteht aus dem instrumentalen Piano-Stück „Upon Contact“ sowie sechs Bearbeitungen desselben, etwa durch den italienischen Soundscape-Künstler Francesco Giannico, den argentinischen Soundtüftler Jorge Haro oder durch das Neoclassical/Ambient Duo Olan Mill. Und mit dieser Aufzählung sind wir bereits mitten in den definierten Grenzen angelangt, die „Upon Contact Reworked“ dann und wann neu zu ziehen versucht, nie aber zu überschreiten vermag. So beginnt das Album mit wunderschönen, in Reverb getränkten Klavierklängen, die sanft um das Grundthema tänzeln, sich in ihrem Tempo und in ihrem in Moll angelegten Wesen zaghaft weiterentwickeln. Die Zeit steht nahezu still. Die Komposition lässt unendlichen Freiraum, um in eine andere Welt abzudriften. So weit, so Film-Soundtrack, wie ihn etwa Asche und Spencer mit ihren Soundscapes perfektionieren. Die Drones und Field-Recordings der ersten Bearbeitung von Francesco Giannico schenken dem Song dann erste wahre Spannungsmomente. Sobald die Streicher deutlicher zu hören sind und ihre Melodien ausdifferenzierter werden, scheint der titelgebende Kontakt schließlich und endlich vollzogen: Mitten in die Herzen der Zuhörer, die sich nun ihren fernen Gedanken vollständig hingeben dürfen. Dementsprechend hypnotisierend, drohend und entspannend zugleich klingt da der immer wiederkehrende Grundton der Olan Mill Bearbeitung. Solch bittersüßer Piano-Melancholie kann in den weiteren Bearbeitungen nur noch wenig hinzugefügt werden. Vielmehr bleibt die Arbeit von Leonardo Rosado fast zu nahe am Original, der schwedische Künstler Quivion arbeitet ebenso mit Drones und Field-Recordings, während Jorge Haro und der griechische Ambientkünstler Hior Chronik gekonnt dezente Glitch-Sounds und sanften Noise beimengen.Insgesamt ist „Upon Contact Reworked“ ein starkes Album und heißer Tipp für Freunde der Neoclassical- und Ambient-Genres. Doch sein größtes Manko liegt wohl im Konzept des Gesamtwerkes: Sechs Bearbeitungen eines Stücks sind zu viel des Guten, um über die volle Länge spannend zu bleiben. Mögen sie zwar grundsätzliche Unterschiede aufweisen, so drohen die Bearbeitungen aufgrund der Wiederholung von Motiven bei stets ähnlicher Atmosphäre ein wenig austauschbar zu werden. Wäre dem mit Modulationen der Tonart, auffälligen Tempo- oder drastischeren Stimmungswechseln zu Leibe gerückt worden, hätte dem Album ein deutlicher – und wohltuender – Spannungsverlauf hinzugefügt werden können. Doch die vermeintliche Schwäche könnte ebensogut als die größte Stärke des Albums gelten. Denn seine innere Dramatik ist jene der originalen Komposition, die bei mehrmaligen Hören eigentlich nicht ergreifender sein könnte. Die Bearbeitungen bewahren diesen Stil Bruno Sanfilipos und erweitern ihn lediglich um reizvolle Nuancen. Und so gelingt es, über die Variation der sieben Songs in 37 Minuten den wahren Kern von „Upon Contact“ auszumachen und zu erleben: Den Mut zur eigenen Erneuerung.
  • "Following on from his critically acclaimed album, ‘Inside Life’, Barcelona based musician and composer Bruno Sanfilippo has returned with a new collaborative album. Entitled ‘Upon Contact Reworked’, and due out on the 21st of May this year through his own ad21 label, the album is less about Sanfilippo’s own work, and more an expression of freedom of creativity. Enlisting the help of several noted musicians from the electronic scene, such as Francesco Giannico, Olan Mill, Leonardo Rosado, Jorge Haro, Quivion and Hior Chronik, the new album is an impressive look into the individuality of artistic impression. Beginning with Sanfilippo’s own hauntingly beautiful composition, ‘Upon Contact’, each subsequent song features a unique reworking of the melody, bringing about a series of cohesive, yet startlingly unique moments as each artist is left to interpret and change the song at without boundaries. Although each musician is working with the same canvas, there is such a wealth of talent on show that it becomes almost impossible to tire of the gentle melody. Every note sounds fresh and new, and you could easily mistake this collaborative project as being one cohesive view, and while it seems on the surface to lack the depth of ‘Inside Life’, it manages to reach stunning moments of fragile serenity. The true wonder of ‘Upon Contact Reworked’ is in it’s building, pristine nature. Every second of the album has a wholly organic feel, with no distracting over-production or superfluous notes, just a simple, direct piano melody and an abundance of creativity"
    Anthem Review
  • Nouvel édifice dans la pléthographique discographie du compositeur néo-classique argentin Bruno Sanfilippo, « Inside Life », exploration introspective et entêtante du piano électrisé. gwendalperrin.net bruno sanfilippo inside lifeSi mes comptes sont bons, nous en sommes rendus au vingtième. Le compositeur Bruno Sanfilippo publie, avec une régularité métronomique, ses travaux entre modern classical et électro-acoustique depuis désormais deux décennies – et ne semble pas prêt de raccrocher les gants.Dans la même dynamique que son précédent « ClarOscuro », « Inside Life » se rapproche de la musique méditative, voire farouchement introspective. Le piano, toujours pièce centrale de l’ensemble, est toutefois de plus en plus régulièrement accompagné dans d’hostiles contrées : plaqué au mur par le violoncelle de Julián Kancepolski, plongé dans l’eau glacée par les effets électro-acoustiques – toujours à foison -, hanté par la voix de Marial Aguilar (sur « Camille » [Saint-Saëns]) mais, plus que jamais, résistant à la pression générale.« Inside Life » est un album (volontairement) désordonné et désarçonnant, comme s’il était envisageable de fusionner dans une seule et même mixture Eluvium, Franz Liszt, Philip Glass et Dag Rosenqvist. Oscillant perpétuellement entre un désespoir policé et une méditation méfiante, cette vingtième création est l’une des plus signifiantes et désabusées de la part du compositeur : pour l’heure, toutefois, la possibilité d’une lumière au bout du chemin n’a pas été éliminée.
    Gwendal Perrin Blog
  • Part of the exquisite joy I have in listening to Bruno Sanfilippo's music comes from the beautiful way that he incorporates silence and echo in his work, and how those elements add to the mood of what he's doing. His track Upon Contact is a fine example of how he applies space within a piece,  and in deep listening those subtle elements help to make Upon Contact become a transcendent musical experience. There's no question in my mind that Upon Contact is a particularly excellent example of Bruno's work, so I'm quite pleased to see that the track forms the basis for his latest release, "Upon Contact Reworked", which finds six artists gathered together to reinterpret the piece in their own style. And in the same way that I appreciate Bruno's use of silence and space, each of the artists involved take the opportunity to highlight the details and qualities of his work that they most appreciate, using those details and qualities as a foundation for their own interpretations. Francesco Giannico's addition of oblique motion and field recordings adds a theatrical quality to Upon Contact that's both inspired and beguiling. Graceful and beautiful, Giannico's additions bring a new sense of longing to the track, moving the feeling of the original into a hauntingly beautiful new realm. Added elements from Olan Mill lend a dreamlike quality to the original, resulting in yet another new direction for the piece. Leonardo Rosado strays away from the original source material to make something a little bit more abstract, a little more drone based, succeeding in taking the listener somewhere completely new while staying within earshot of familiar territory. Jorge Haro also ventures into abstract territory, adding radar pings and sweeping waves to the track to create a hypnotizing and engaging new context for Bruno's work. The Quivion Rework adds field recordings and a few nice abstract moments that blend together in a way that makes it my favorite track on the release (well, favorite after the original that is...). And last but not least, the Hior Chronik Rework re-envisions the piece as a hybrid of natural organic elements and processed sounds that move the track firmly into the future. I'm quite fond of all the remixes here and I enjoy the way that they all bring a new context to one of my favorite pieces by Bruno Sanfilippo. Part of my appreciation for remix albums is the opportunity to hear an artist's work from a new perspective, and when they're particularly well executed you can usually find a whole new enjoyment for already familiar work. "Upon Contact Reworked" fully succeeds in it's execution by giving the listener a new opportunity to explore and appreciate Bruno's music. As a long-time fan I really appreciate having the chance to rediscover one of my favorite artist's work with new ears.