Electronic composer from the Italian Marche region, musically born in an analog world – Paolo F. Bragaglia reaches our digital days through a path characterized by a constant interest in the sound metamorphosis through musical genres.
Involved in the historical scene of the Marche region new wave, he gave birth to numerous groups including Tzar's Revox and 3B Unit. The exploration of new worlds of sound has always pushed him to seek the possible involvement of music with the moving image, the scene, the architecture. Hence an intense career as a composer of soundtracks, with works in dance, theater, art galleries, with a constant fascination for the comparison between melody and experimentation. He has composed countless music for commercials, documentaries, music for television and films screened in festivals all around the world (he recently contributed to the original soundtrack of the upcoming movie “Io sono Vera”, directed by Beniamino Catena) and has worked in numerous theatrical and audiovisual performances. Deeply involved in the use of interactive technologies for experimenting music, he also conceived the augmented reality project “Geotracks”, based on the geo-localization of music and poetry readings in sensitive places.
Author of seven published albums, he has collaborated with a considerable number of musicians, directors and artists – Mauro Pagani (guest on his first album “Magnum Chaos” in 1999), Steve Piccolo, Monica Demuru, Howie B, Roberto Paci Dalò, Robert Lippok , Orchestra Filarmonica Marchigiana and the dancer Simona Lisi – and has performed with various projects in numerous festivals such as Time Zones, Dancity, Cinematica, Rassegna di Nuova Musica, Spaziomusica, Ipercorpo, Beach Bum Festival, Inteatro, APP, Blooming, Mozartfest Wurzburg and in places such as the Museo Maxxi, MACRO and Palazzo Venezia in Rome, the Louvre Museum in Paris, the Italian Cultural Institute in Marseille and Warsaw, the Museo Leonardo da Vinci and Fabbrica del Vapore in Milan, Palazzo Reale in Turin and in many other contexts.
Founder and director of the Acusmatiq electronic music festival (in Ancona, since 2006) and founder of the Museo del Synth Marchigiano dedicated to vintage electronic instruments made in his region of origin.
“The Man from the Lab” is his first album to be released with his own name after the acclaimed “Mystere du Printemps” in 2006, for the historic Minus Habens Records and follows the album “YUG” with the electro-acoustic duo Synusonde in 2011. “The Man from the Lab” is the electronic soundtrack of an imaginary television series, produced in another dimension and set in a secret experimental biology laboratory and in a dystopian world in the late 1970s, in which an unknown virus comes from the future brought by a mysterious courier. Science fiction, dystopia and uchrony, like mirrors between different space-time planes, to activate appropriate musical suggestions to evoke moods and ghosts of our contemporary world, in an imaginative way and with a retro-futurist aesthetic.
The nine tracks on the album are strongly inspired by the cold and synthetic sounds of the English electronic new wave between the 70s and the early 80s (“Metamatic” by John Foxx, Sheffield bands like the first Human League and Cabaret Voltaire, the first Mute Records such as Fad Gadget and The Normal or Gary Numan), but at the same time they dialogue with contemporary electronic sounds to place themselves “out of time” and avoid the mannerist cliché of “retro-mania” at all costs. An intensive use of vintage analog synths helps to create a sound texture that reinforces the temporal displacement, a fundamental component of the spirit of the album.
“The Man from the Lab” is therefore an instrumental concept (with only one sung song) in which the author shares the realization effort with the couple of producers Ganzfeld Frequency Test for a record that was conceived, created and produced during the first pandemic lockdown of last year, in which the titles also refer to various aspects of the world of scientific laboratories. An album that, after long explorations in different musical territories, finally represents also a tribute to the sounds that influenced the origins of the career of the composer and musician from Marche region.
TRACK BY TRACK – THE WORDS OF PAOLO F. BRAGAGLIA
Monkey. Rhythmic and cadenced piece with a strong electronic imprint, with a text declaimed by a vocal synthesizer and a vocoder, with disturbing atmospheres inspired by the dramatic conditions of laboratory primates.
The Mixture. A track with marked electro movements, fast and “urgent” with melodic elements from a science fiction soundtrack.
The Man from the Lab. The hypothetical initials of the hypothetical soundtrack of the hypothetical television series. Melancholic and futuristic sounds – in 1979 – to evoke the unsettling and suggestive point of collision between human events, space-time tangles and scientific research.
Black Swan. The hypothetical conclusive passage of the hypothetical soundtrack of the hypothetical television series. The only sung song on the album, by myself, which is intended as a tribute to the electronic cold wave of John Foxx from “Metamatic”.
Rabbit’s Run. Another chapter of electro which, together with “The Mixture”, is one of the most pressing and fast tracks of the entire work. Acid and obsessive sounds that are virtually inspired by the soundtrack of a hypothetical escape scene of a rabbit / lab rat from a laboratory.
Bat. A dark and enigmatic track where various stylistic elements converge: sounds coming from modular synths and acid basslines that stand out against melodies with a strong cinematic sense.
Stirrers. Track with a strong kinetic system, scratchy and acid sounds that programmatically evoke a situation of great excitement, almost programmed music on the frenetic movement of the tubes stirred by the mechanical mixer.
Dust. An evocative and reflective moment, melancholy and pressing at the same time. Sequences, pads and synths intertwine to outline a feeling of calm and slight desolation, where the loss of the unique perception of time and the sense of the unknown are the protagonists.
Dawn of the Mouse. Another piece with an enigmatic and slightly dark pace, with electronic and abstract sounds that refer directly to the concept of the disc as a soundtrack. It is inspired, as the title says, by the glimmers of the first light of dawn that are reflected on the machinery and cages of a lab rat.