Despite the short amount of time since the beginning of this project, Carles Viarnès, piano, and Pep Massana, violin, both musicians are well versed in classical and experimental music and have been in a handful of bands reflecting these musical inclinations. On this occasion, they embrace improvisational, contemporary music. Essentially, their proposal develops live through the interplay of different elements of experimentation.
Their first live performance, ‘Tabula Rasa’ (2008), resulted from rehearsals of classical pieces that progressively ventured into improvisational compositions. Hence, the resulting pieces of music range from sight-read compositions to themes with a classical and contemporary feel to them: from Messiaen or John Cage to Gorecki, with a nudge at popular contemporary music, jazz and even world music. It is, in all, a homage paid to creative, aesthetical and interpretative freedom.
In the experimentation within different musical languages, their next joint project ‘Llibre Vermell' sees new timbres explored through instruments such as the organistrum and the octaved violin, with its 8 strings. These two instruments have benn constructed by the violinist himself. Melodies from the ‘Llibre Vermell de Montserrat’ (Montserrat’s Red Book; a manuscript from the fourteenth century) are treated in this project, from a perspective which is closer to Arvo Pärt, Tüür or Stockhausen’s contemporary music, but always maintaining the organic and emotional component of the music within reach.
To experience a live act by these two musicians takes one to places reserved only for such pleasures as emotional stimulation, harmonic reaction, and pure astonishment.