Music Reviews

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Artist: HUE
Title: Un'estate senza pioggia
Format: CD
Label: Grey Sparkle/Tra Zero e Uno
Rated: *****
As usual, reviewing music by friends of yours is not always easy, even more so when you have also played with them - and with Matteo Uggeri/Hue I have shared a release I'm very fond of. But well. I think this is the first full-length release where Hue doesn't use his usual alias Sparkle in Grey, which makes sense: while SiG is an electronic-based project (be it IDM, ambient or electroacoustics), this disc (the title means "A summer without rain") is mainly based on concrete recordings, found sounds and real time performances, courtesy of a bunch of friends (Davide Vallecchi/aal, Andrea Marutti/Amon-Never Know, Giuseppe Verticchio/Nimh, Nefelheim...). The whole thing started in 2003, when during his summer holidays Hue picked up every kind of sound with a minidisc (voices, cicadas, church chants, pebbles, rain...) and played with the above mentioned mates; one year later, he met Davide Vallecchi again and added more field recordings and guitars. Everything was eventually assembled in seven tracks, clocking in at one hour, featuring several sub-divisions or movements. Despite the following work of editing and mixing, which must have been very careful, the whole work has maintained a free-flowing, fragmentary feel. You can hear Hue talking with other people, or walking, or jamming - a kind of diary or polaroid collection. The strictly musical part is quite limited, with a predominance of Vallecchi's melancholic guitars, which have a sort of wave feel to them, perfectly merging with the atmosphere of the cd. Which is one of nostalgic recollection, of letting yourself go or just flow with the environment (sounds a little summer-of-love, doesn't it). It's a work with many details and shades which will appeal to those who like the more humane part of field-recordings based compositions. Due to its very fragmentary nature, it honestly fails to really grasp my attention after its first half or so, but I'm a very tired listener at the moment. I'm sure some more spinning would do this justice.

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