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Best of 2021

M. Zalla, Piero Umiliani

Africa / Continente Nero (2LP in bundle)

Label: Dialogo

Series: Piero Umiliani Legacy

Format: 2LP in bundle

Genre: Library/Soundtracks

Out of stock

Dialogo launches their brand new Piero Umiliani Legacy Series, with stunning reissues of "Africa" and "Continente Nero", two of the celebrated Italian composer's most important and creatively visionary works, which have been remastered from the original analogue master tapes.

This bundle includes the first two volumes in the new Piero Umiliani Legacy Series, namely the following:

M. Zalla (Piero Umiliani) "Africa" (1972, LP)
Piero Umilani "Continente Nero" (1975, LP)



M. Zalla (Piero Umiliani) "Africa" (1972, LP)

**Ltd. 500 copies, remastered from the original analogue master tapes. Audiophile pressing. Perfect replica of the original packaging (with additional translated liner notes and OBI) and newly remastered for optimal sound.** In 1972 Piero Umiliani was above all the man of a thousand soundtracks and the first Italian jazz experiments; from his later career we’ll soon learn that wasn’t enough for him, showing just a tiny part of a more complex picture. Closed within the walls of his Sound Work Shop Studio, the Maestro was weaving much more complicated and satisfying plots, incorporating dozens of influences from a life spent experimenting and discovering new sounds.

Among the most fascinating ones, those who came from a continent like Africa, as much fabled as actually little known, but enchanting to the point that Umiliani dedicated to it the entire Africa - which is paired with its twin-record Continente Nero - and released it as M. Zalla, pseudonym used when it came to tidying up uncompromising and avant-garde music textures, as will later happen with masterpieces such as Suspense, Problemi d’Oggi or Mondo Inquieto.

Always keep in mind when this album had been released, in January 1972, before approaching its content: here the prog-tinged black rhythm of Africa To-Day, the ‘fourth world’ inspiration coming from Jon Hassell’s Green Dawn, the ‘exotic’ references in Martin Denny’s style (Lonely Village, Echos), the electronic new wave (hearing is believing!) of Sortilège, the folk music (Rite, Folk-Tune). Many years in advance, in Africa Piero Umiliani summarizes sounds and styles that will make the fortune of much more celebrated and popular musicians and artists. (Stefano Gilardino)



Piero Umilani "Continente Nero" (1975, LP)

**Ltd. 500 copies, remastered from the original analogue master tapes. Audiophile pressing. Perfect replica of the original packaging (with additional translated liner notes and OBI) and newly remastered for optimal sound.** Released via the Omicron label in 1975, three years after AfricaContinente Nero is the perfect flip side of an album that significantly expanded Piero Umiliani’s music perspectives, incorporating partially explored rhythmic variations already used in records such as Percussioni ed Effetti Speciali and To-Day’s Sound or experimenting new solutions that drew from a musical heritage little known at the time such as the African one.

Without bothering with the usual alias M. Zalla, Umiliani reveal his birth name and surname for a second foray into a territory that pays homage to an entire continent. And it does so by taking inspiration not only from a tradition that starts from the divine Fela Kuti and reaches the amateur and field recordings by musicologists such as David Toop, invaluable documents of an artistic heritage still today almost impossible to map in its complexity, but also from the Afro-American jazz history by Art Ensemble of ChicagoJohn ColtraneMax Roach and hundreds of others.

It sounds clear in tracks such as Nuovi FermentiRivoluzionariRiscossa or Ultimo Stregone that show Umiliani’s extraordinary ability to grab a distant tradition essential traits and put them effortlessly into a personal imaginary world, as much exciting as the original one. (Stefano Gilardino)

Details
Cat. number: DIALP918-920
Year: 2021

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