FREE-DOT Recordings

Just Flux!, which follows Ariband (SLAM 2010), the first recording of the duo, is a project of improvised music based on a set of musical instruments and musical objects. No scores, words or any other suggestion was definied before playing. Just flux!

Just flux! retro

Flutes (flute, piccolo, alto, bass…), drums (daire, daff, tombak, bodhran, maroccan tabla…) berimbao, mbira, Jew’s harp, a set of stones, steel lids, bells, nuts, reed and shell rattles…and the piano, played directly from the strings and used as resonant witness.


Just Flux! copertina


FREE-DOT
Paolo Pacciolla – Antonio Cotardo
“Just Flux!” (Slam Productions)


Just flux? or flux that somehow answers musical justness or rightness? The small and deconstructed instrument approach – a couple of tracks use flute headjoints, stones, pot lids – is hard enough to pull off musically, harder still to pull off with such delicacy and grace. These are lovely pieces, performed by two master musicians who know how to make music without just joining dots but who also understand the narrow line between freedom and an unsatisfying randomness. Brian Morton, Jazz Journal May 2013

Free Dot is an Italian duo featuring Paolo Pacciolla on drums, berimbao, mbira, Jew’s harp & piano and Antonio Cotardo on flutes, bells, piano & voice. This is the second disc on Slam from the same duo although they called themselves Ariband on the first one. Mr.Cotardo plays a variety of flutes here: alto, bass, C, bamboo & Greek flutes while Mr. Pacciolla plays assorted percussion: bodran, stones, pot lids, cymbals & drums. This is a completely improvised session and it has a rather ritualistic vibe. Somber yet cosmic, free spirits without the virtuosic excess. After more than fifty years, “free music” is a universal language that is not bound by words or borders. When it works, it doesn’t matter where it comes from. It speaks directly to the heart and mind simultaneously. It works quite well here so dig in and enjoy. Bruce Lee Gallanter, Downtown Music Gallery

A second album for the duo of Antonio Cotardo (flutes, mostly) and Paolo Pacciolla (percussion, mostly). Just Flux! is 50 minutes of free improvisation on a wide array of flutes and percussion instruments. Rhythm rules the proceedings, and a great openness to the world permeates from the music – influences pile up, well digested, in this aerial and lively music. http://blog.monsieurdelire.com/2013/02/2013-02-15-braidalocatelli-free-dot.html

Free Dot, il punto libero con cui si è chiamato il duo in questione questa volta presenza un concerto live, rinunciando quindi agli effetti della sovraregistrazione. La loro musica improvvisata con strumenti etnici e non ha delle radici, in quella delle tradizioni delle musiche extraeuropee, nelle registrazioni e nelle performances sul campo, ma anche in pionieri come Stephan Micus che nelle sue innumerevoli registrazioni fatte in solo per la Japo prima e la ECM dopo ha messo insieme strumenti di tradizioni ed etnie diverse su innumerevoli tracce arrivando a delle suggestive conclusioni su supporto audio ben recepite dal pubblico. I due musicisti italiani, Paolo Pacciolla alla batteria, berimbau, mbira, voce, arpa ebraica, piano, campanelli e Antonio Cotardo ai flauti, voce, campane, pianoforte affascinano e seducono il pubblico con una musica che può sembrare semplice, allo stesso tempo lontana anni luce dalle facili suggestioni di quella che si ascolta nei saloni di bellezza per rilassare i clienti. C´è tensione in quello che fanno, un flusso di energia che scorre lentamente ma inesorabile, l´uso di tradizioni extraeuropee fatto con un approccio originale. L´incontro del berimbau, proveniente dal Brasile, e di flauti in uso in luoghi lontani e apparentemente irraggiungibili fa scintille, così come il cercare le risonanze all´interno del pianoforte, o gli incontri con gli altri strumenti percussivi raccolti per il globo. È uno di quei dischi che si ascoltano molte volte, bello e misterioso allo stesso tempo, da cui più che una formula traspare l´interesse per il suono allo stato puro insieme al momento magico colto dai microfoni. Vittorio Lo Conte http://www.musiczoom.it/?p=11928

Improvvisazione pura, estemporaneo flusso di coscienza, a partire solo da un variegato set di strumenti e oggetti, quello messo in atto da questi due eccellenti musicisti pugliesi. Poliflautista sperimentale, di formazione accademica e jazzistica, Antonio Cotardo, è solista alla costante ricerca della propria voce strumentale, sempre in relazione agli infiniti, possibili percorsi, reali o immaginari, che le molteplici tradizioni musicali altre possono offrire. Pianista, percussionista, etnomusicologo, profondo conoscitore della musica classica indiana, è invece Paolo Pacciolla, qui in veste di vero e proprio architetto del paesaggio sonoro, impegnato nel far risuonare campane, nel tintinnare cimbali, nel percuotere tamburi, nel far “parlare” la mbira africana, nello scandire ritmi al berimbao, il tipico cordofono della cultura brasiliana, e nel far riverberare le corde del pianoforte preparato. Una registrazione che si irradia nello spazio per placidi moti, regolari o irregolari, come di onde solleticate da una lieve brezza. A tratti l’ispirazione sembra essere quella meravigliata, ipnotica e rivelatrice del Tony Scott di Music for Zen Meditations. Ricercatori. Marco Maiocco http://www.discoclub65.it/jazz/archivio-mainmenu-42/5193-free-dot-just-flux.html

The notes say this is a project of improvised music based on musical instruments and objects, hence the titles of the tunes, which just describe the instruments.I actually like this idea, not being a fan of song titles which don’t mean anything. And this is a duo,which I also like.
And just a technical note, the drums are mainly handdrums, not a drum set.
When I first started listening I thought that the music was South American, especially with some of the flute playing, and drumming, or Asian, especially when the bamboo flute and gongs are used, or mid eastern when minor scales are used, so I had to check where Lizzanello is.
The tunes meld into one another, since the moods of all of them are similar, even though theinstrumentation
changes. To my ears, this CD should be listened to as one long track with changing instrumentation, rather than as different tracks. Most of the CD is quite mellow, though, as in “stones,pot lids” there is more active drumming. And Pacciolla’s c flute, definitely has some jazz influence. I really enjoyed “Jew’s harp” not having heard that instrument played in a jazz context since Dizzy played it back in the 80s.
The interplay between Cotardo and Paciolla is excellent. There were sections which worked so well they could have been composed, but that is the beauty of improvisations between players who listen carefully to each other.
A nice record, which would make for some very nice background music, but would also stand up to careful listening. Bernie Koenig, Cadence Magazine | Oct Nov Dec 2013
 




FREE-DOT
Paolo Pacciolla – Antonio Cotardo

“Ariband” (Slam Productions)

Downtown Music Gallery, Bruce Lee Gallanter.Featuring Antonio Cotardo on flutes and Paolo Pacciolla on mbira, daire, jemback, bells & voice. ……. Both of these musicians are Italian which is also where this disc was recorded in February & March of 2009. This is a splendid, well-balanced recording of mostly flutes and hand percussion or thumb piano. The hand percussion includes a daire which is a large tambourine and a jembak is a large hand drum played with a brush or just hands. The daire is featured on “Rengil” and it sounds much like a frame drum, the sound is similar to Steve Gorn and Glen Velez, who play similar instruments. At times Paolo sounds as if he is playing thin sticks or rustling leaves giving the duo a most enchanting, sublime afterglow. Antonio over-dubs another flute or two thus adding an eerie, ghostlike vibe to their sound. The persistent use of bells sounds like chimes being moved by the wind, thus also adding a dream-like quality. One of the great things about this disc and duo is that Paolo often plays his percussion in a most melodic way, the way a great tabla player also assumes more than just the rhythmic role when he or she solos. Ariband is/are one of those enchanting duos I’ve heard in a long while, occasionally soothing yet consistently mesmerizing.

NAFDA Newsletter, Scott Robinson. Some may know Italian percussionist Paolo Pacciolla from AP Percussion ….. This CD features his duo Free Dot with flute player Antonio Cotardo – a very fine musician. The recording quality and performances are just great on this CD with compositions being offered by each of the musicians……If you are unfamiliar with these musicians don’t let that stop you – this music will appeal to a wide variety of listeners and will satisfy those seeking depth and vision balanced with heart and feel in the music they enjoy. The flute and percussion are featured equally throughout with both sensitive musicians providing a give and take – taking the music to exciting places and allowing it to breath in sensitive moments. What strikes me most about these musicians is their unique musical identity – it’s unidentifiable in terms of place. Being both Italians, you wouldn’t know it listening to the music. It’s almost jazz but from where I can’t tell. The flute is clear and well played – not quite classical and not quite jazz but not light or forgettable. My attention was grasped from the moment I heard the 1st track – who are these guys? They sound fresh! Not overbearing, never pointless – there’s a musical sensitivity that is perfect throughout each piece on the CD. Pacciolla’s frame drumming – lap style, hand held, bendir, daire – is well done and complimented by his mbira (kalimba),brushes, other percussion, and voice throughout. This is the kind of world music that lovers of Codona and Hadouk will gravitate to – again and again. The music has a strong organic feel with the production more natural allowing for the variety of flutes and percussion to sound well but never larger than life the way some modern recordings tend to accentuate. It’s very apparent that this CD will grow upon the listener who at once can enjoy its sincere fresh breath of a voice and revel in its offerings as they become close travelling companions the more you listen to them.

A different proposition from Slam Productions: an Italian duo of flute (Antonio Cotardo) and Indian/Persian percussion (Paolo Pacciolla, mostly on daire and jembak). Aerial compositions, free and hypnotic, simple and touching flute melodies, sounds like a meeting between Glen Velez and Moe Koffman! HIGHLY enjoyable. François Couture http://blog.monsieurdelire.com/

Punto libero di  Vittorio Lo Conte. Chi ha ascoltato la musica di Stephan Micus prima su Japo e poi su ECM, con ogni volta sulle copertine un lungo elenco di strumenti delle tradizioni di paesi così lontani l´uno dall´altro, sarà rimasto sorpreso da quello che è riuscito ad inventare anche grazie alle tecniche di registrazione e sovraincisione che negli anni sono migliorate. Oppure Don Cherry ed il trio Codona, che ha lasciato le sue importanti tracce su tre incisioni anch´esse per la ECM. Un genere che ha un suo fascino, che mette insieme cose che di solito non si incontrano, idee che spuntano durante viaggi lontani e che poi si catalizzano durante il lavoro in studio di incisione.
È una lezione ripresa da due musicisti italiani: Antonio Cotardo, alle prese con dei flauti etnici, e Paolo Pacciolla, che suona tamburi e percussioni che vengono dalla tradizione dell´Iran e dell´India, da lui studiata con in maestri del luogo, oltre ad invenzioni proprie, come quello che ha chiamato jembak, un tamburo a metà fra il djembé ed il tombak, che suona con una spazzola da batteria.
Durante mesi di preparazione, ascoltando, avvertendo quello che i suoni volevano comunicare, levando, aggiungendo tracce, note, alla fine sono arrivati a celebrare un incontro che in fondo è antichissimo, quello di flauti e tamburi, qui possibile grazie alla tecnologia ed ai viaggi. Un incontro così è qualcosa di speciale, che prende subito l´ascoltatore, un´atmosfera sciamanica da cui ci si stacca malvolentieri perchè c´è qualcosa di ipnotico in quello che i due propongono. È come un fumo che lentamente si innalza e prende con sé in un immaginario viaggio dei desideri.
Tuttavia c´è tanta coerenza e maturità in questo disco, nessuna faciloneria, niente di buttato là sulla bilancia di un facile esotismo. E ben ha fatto l´emerita Slam Productions di George Haslam a pubblicarlo, continuando l´attenzione, anche in UK, per i musicisti italiani. http://www.musicboom.it/mostra_recensioni.php?Unico=20101117062833

L’immaginazione dolce di Dinko Fabris. Il giornale della musica n.284, settembre 2011. Un viaggio affascinante in una sonosfera immaginaria e incontaminata, lontana dalle brutture e dalle ansie della vita quotidiana: ma non si tratta dell’ennesimo prodotto di world music e meno che meno di tappezzeria New Age. Sotto la denominazione di Free-Dot due giovani musicisti salentini hanno unito le loro forze per avviare una ricerca comparativa e associativa sui suoni e sulle culture.…una via dolce e gradevole alla sperimentazione sul suono.

Cadence, jul – aug – sep 2011 | cadence | 77 . Sticking with the World Music arena, Italian duo FREE DOT (Antonio Cotardo, flt, bells; Paolo Pacciolla, daire, Jembak, bells, mbira, vcl, bells) considers eight meditative tone poems (Rengil / Preludio / Villaggio X / Mirab / Jembak / Strange / Ariband / Suono Libero. 53:16. February-March 2009, Lizzanello, Italy) on ARIBAND (SLAM 525) that serves as a pleasing elixir after a hard day’s work. From the start, the duo possesses a sympathetic relationship that matches improvised realms with Jazz, Indian, and Middle Eastern influences. “Rengil” pairs Cotardo’s breathy flute with Pacciolla’s hand drums, an approach also taken on the moving “Villagio C.” Cotardo’s flute is certainly the focal point throughout, at least in terms of melody, with the reverie, “Preludio” and the concluding comments of “Suono Liberio” serving as an example of his engaging work. Pacciolla is equally impressive when utilizing his wealth of percussive sounds, such as when his mbira and vocals are the crux of “Mirab” and “Ariband,” while the aptly titled “Jembak” is a fine feature for Pacciolla’s work on the drum, though “Strange” is sim­ply mesmerizing thanks to Pacciolla’s forceful drumming. Overall, the strong improvisational perspectives within these softened realms is a success. http://www.cadencebuilding.com/

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