‘Click Interview’ with Netherworld: ‘Silence Is Essential’
When I think of Netherworld, I immediately make a link with Glacial Movements. Operating from Rome (Italy) Alessandro Tedeschi released the first Netherworld production during the early millennium years. He set up Glacial Movements in 2006 and started to release dark-ambient and cinematic productions. “Algida Bellezza” is the musician’s return to the ambient universe of Netherworld. It became a delicate and poignant production inspired by the birth of Alessandro’s daughter. He asked an interesting question about a possible existing ‘parallel between the beauty, innocence and fragility of a newborn baby girl and that of the flora and fauna present in the fragile Arctic ecosystems’. I talked about it all with Alessandro Tedeschi and his mate Matteo Spinazzè Savaris who mixed, mastered and co-produced the album.
(Courtesy by Inferno Sound Diaries)
Q: “Algida Bellezza” is the first Netherworld-album in years! How do you explain this long silence? Do you think such a long break can also be benefic to find new music ideas and to create new compositions?
Alessandro: To be honest, between the “Alchemy Of Ice” and “Algida Bellezza”-albums, I released two other albums, which both were published for the techno / “Dub Iceberg”-series of the label. One is “Himuro”, composed together with my friend Eraldo Bernocchi and the other is “Zastrugi” (2015) for which I composed all the songs, but which were then mixed and mastered by my friend Matteo Spinazzè Savaris.
It’s been a long time… but since I’m also the artistic director and founder of Glacial Movements, I have preferred to give space to other artists over the years. I had many demos to produce from great artists, and doing it all alone takes time, energy and dedication. I also have a stable job that occupies my day for at least 8 hours, and I also have a beautiful family, so I have to be good at knowing how to handle all these things well. I have never been a very prolific artist, I prefer to wait for the right moment to release a complete album. But above all, I must also have an idea to propose to myself and to the public.
Moreover, regarding “Algida Bellezza”, the realization time was actually longer than usual. I had created the whole structure of the five songs in a very short time (in the first week of my daughter’s birth in 2015), but then I decided to entrust the rest of the work to my friend and sound engineer Matteo Spinazzè Savaris. Considering that he too has many other jobs to pursue, the long silence is explained.
Yes, I really believe it… in my opinion taking a long break, can only be good for myself and also for the expectations of the people who support me. Silence is essential.
Q: This new work is probably one of the most special- and intimate ones you’ve ever composed as it’s entirely dedicated to the birth of your daughter! Has your daughter be the click to start composing again? How did it really happen and does this major event in life had an influence on you as musician and human being?
Alessandro: “Algida Beauty” would never have been composed without my newborn daughter in my arms. She was my muse during the composition of the soundscapes of the entire album. This happened during the first few days of her life… I was rocking her, and at the same time I was scrutinizing and composing the tracks using only one instrument, the VP9000 connected with an Eventide. This beautiful event has completely overwhelmed my life, a sudden impulse of emotions I felt it needed to be propagate in the ether. It was as if that sweet, tender and fragile beauty was talking to me. There are not enough words to describe those moments. My daughter and I in a way translated this into sound. I certainly feel the influence on me above all as a living being. Every day there is something new to discover together, being the father of a child is something really special. It’s a fantastic adventure, impossible to get bored. There are so many things I want to teach her, but it will take time as it should be.
She is now four years old, and she has already shown interest in what I do musically. She enjoys the synths and plays Tibetan bowls. She is curious, and somehow remembers me when I was a child. As a human being she has profoundly influenced my life. She is a ray of light. From a musical point of view, everything I wanted to express through sound is in the 45 minutes of the album. I have a lot of other stuff to work on … we’ll see what happens in the future!
Q: “Algida Bellezza” is not just an album dedicated to your daughter, but still a conceptual work with a deeper question dealing with the existence of a possible ‘parallel between the beauty, innocence and fragility of a newborn baby girl and that of the flora and fauna present in the Arctic areas and therefore even more fragile on the planet’? How do you imagine this parallel and how did you try to transpose it into music?
Alessandro: This is an excellent question, which gives me the opportunity to describe the concept of “Algida Beauty” more in depth.
In reality, the idea of linking the two things happened after the composition of the songs. Being an album that was supposed to come out on Glacial Movements, but that was actually inspired by an event that had nothing to do with glacial issues, I needed to find the link. At first, it was not easy to find it at all, but one day I read on an scientific blog, that the umpteenth gigantic block of ice had come off the Antarctic coast, and that this event would then inevitably compromise the fragile ecosystem of the whole world. I strongly believe that we are living in the worst period in human history (second only to the universal flood), global warming is unstoppable and irreversible and in addition to affecting the environment, it is also affecting animal species. Such as polar bears, walruses, orcas, whales and even sled dogs in Greenland, whose population has increased from 30,000 to just a few thousand.
The latter is represented in the cover image of the album, whose photo was taken by photographer Carsten Egevang who is narrating the critical situation in that territory. All this criticality, fragility, but above all the beauty of these places and animals, has triggered in me a connection with what had just happened to me, namely the birth of my daughter. The beauty of a newborn child is at the same time also fragile and defenseless. She needs attention and care from her mom and dad, so we must preserve her by keeping her safe. The same thing should be done by all humanity towards the Arctic and Antarctic ecosystem, but it is too late; we have not had respect for nature, and we will therefore be punished for this. Unfortunately, I am almost certain that my daughter will not be able to see the icy beauty of our planet.
The title of the songs I have chosen therefore refer to the Latin names of some animals at risk of extinction, such as “Orcinus Orca”, which I can define the darkest song of the album. In my opinion, what has been described so far, can be perceived while listening to “Algida Bellezza”. There are ethereal and melancholic passages that alternate with darker and more threatening moments.
Q: That brings me to say “Algida Bellezza” sounds dreamy and relaxing, but indeed, still filled with darker passages. I know this is just my subjective feeling as listener, but here again it’s interesting trying to find the link with the concept of the work! Do you recognize the ‘dreamy & and relaxing” elements plus the ‘darker passages’ and what do they stand for?
Alessandro: You hit the mark. It’s not just your impression, but it’s what I wanted to get to the listener. The dreamy element is present in that I describe distant and almost immaculate, pure and wonderful landscapes. They are covered in white…. but unfortunately still for a short time, and therefore there are also more obscure elements, which indicate the environmental danger that we are all facing. The piece that most of all represents the darkness is “Orcinus Orca”.
Matteo: I felt “Algida Bellezza” like a trip in the deep world of our consciousness; like a soundwalk in a meditation state of mind touching the very profound soul of the human being.
Q: Tell us a bit more about the different stages of the composition you’d to go through? What did you keep in mind as the major difficulties you encountered and eventually some challenges in the accomplishment of this work?
Alessandro:I have to say I haven’t had any. Everything was born and evolved in a very fluid way precisely because I was truly inspired. I had never experienced this before.
Matteo: We are matter and are all connect to each other. Mankind doesn’t know that matter, and energy exist in many different vibrational frequencies and levels, but all occupies the same space. It’s like going through dimensions, visualizing different forms of matter liquid, gas or plasma.
Q: Can we consider “Algida Bellezza” as a referential work to illustrate the sound, influences and maybe philosophy of Glacial Movements? And how do you perceive this new work compared to earlier Netherworld-productions?
Alessandro: Hard to say… I have produced forty record releases and each one could be referential. What I’m sure of is that this album is certainly more intimate and personal than my previous ones, as the feelings that made this possible are tied to my daughter. Probably this work touches strings different from other works.
Matteo: I love using the binaural recording technique to immerse our mind and body in a wider ‘vision’ of primordial landscapes. This new work continues the legacy of exploring the connection that exists between sounds, mind and the energy of Earth. The ability of the human being to receive the vibrations of the surrounding world.
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