Since their founding in 2000, the Bologna based cultural platform, Xing, has worked tirelessly in support of objects and events that embrace an interdisciplinary approach toward the issues of contemporary culture. More recently, their record label has expanded this initiative to amplify the voices of artists - both Italian and international - who are deeply engaged in the world of live performativity, a modus that has now been offered even more focus with their latest series, Xong, a vinyl-only collection that explores a geography of artists who present the sonic field as a means to expand their staging of free standing, intimate worlds. Easily some of the most exciting recordings we’ve heard this year, the series’ first two entries - Lydia Mancinelli and Marcello Maloberti’s Martellate. Scritti Fighi 1990-2020 and Kinkaleri and Jacopo Benassi’s Once More - take a deep dive into a creative frontier that rests at the borders of the theatrical, sound art, experimental music, noise, the poetic, and the generatively performative. Drawing out divergent understandings of the performative and live art, both are absolutely incredible - blurring the boundaries between action and the act of listening - in remarkably singular ways.
Kinkaleri, Jacopo Benassi "Once More" (White LP)
The first entry in Xing’s Xong series is an incredible collaboration between the collective Kinkaleri and the photographer and artist, Jacopo Benassi, issued on white vinyl, in a limited and numbered edition of 150 copies with a 24-page booklet of photos by Benassi.
Founded in Florence during 1995, over the last two and a half decades Kinkaleri has continuously operated at the juncture of performance, experimental theatre, movement research, visual production, installation, and sonic gestures, intent on "looking for a language not on the basis of a style but directly in the evidence of an object". Over the duration of their activities, the group's dynamic interdisciplinary practice has consolidated into a unique creative trajectory - staged between theatres, contemporary art museums, dance and theatre festivals, and art galleries - that is captured across the length of Once More, their collaboration with Jacopo Benassi, a photographer, artist, and musician based in La Spezia, whose work in performance and sound embraces an experimental approach to mediation through the photographic image.
Harnessing the highly nuanced creative visions and approaches of its collaborators, Once More is constructed from a series of subjects that are in continuous confrontation with each other, presenting the sonic artefacts of a concert and performance where body, sound, word, and live photo become the unpredictable and variable elements of its composition and culminate as a unique staging of ecstasy and freedom.
Stratified as a rhythmic score within a circular vortex, Once More is raw, performative sound at its best; perception bending controlled chaos that rides the razor’s edge between punk, noise, hardcore and other elements of underground culture, peppered with tinges of ironic melancholy. In addition to all the incredible sounds that sprawl across the album’s two sides, Once More is accompanied by a stunning 24-page booklet with photos by Benassi, offering a multidimensional, interdisciplinary deep dive into the Italian underground in all its defiant and uncategorizable glory. Taking Xing’s amazing efforts to the next level, this one can’t be missed.
Martellate. Scritti Fighi 1990-2020. Lydia Mancinelli Legge Marcello Maloberti (White LP)
Moving even further into the realms of the unexpected, Xong’s second releases in the Xing series, Scritti Fighi 1990-2020, encounters the Italian actress, Lydia Mancinelli, reading the “written voices” of Martellate, a collection of impulsive written fragments by the visual artist Marcello Maloberti. Amounting to a stunning collective gesture of sound poetry and creative wonderment, it’s a mind-bending emersion at the creative juncture between radical ideas and the human voice.
Marcello Maloberti is an Italian artist who lives and works in Milan, and has built a fascinating, decades deep body of research and output that draws inspiration from trivial events and subtle aspects of marginalized urban experience, while focused on the shapeless and precarious states of daily life. Martellate - Scritti Fighi 1990-2020, read by the legendary Italian theatre and film actress, Lydia Mancinelli, delves into Maloberti’s fascinating world through text fragments, drawing on his longstanding interest regarding the bond between art and life through language and the performative.
A collection of writings in the form of slogans - having accompanied Maloberti across almost thirty years of poetics - Martellate. Scritti Fighi 1990-2020 drifts with the rise and fall of Mancinelli’s voice, forming epigraphs that range from poetry to irony and stitch a constant succession of moods and formal tones. Channelling the primordial and instinctive, a fascinating self-portrait and a collective mirror emerges in the voice of another; direct and filled with humor and creative brilliance that continues to hammer away at your thoughts long after its sounding has come to an end.
Fantastic from start to finish, Martellate. Scritti Fighi 1990-2020 offers incredible new ways to address the poetic and the spoken word. Issued in a very limited edition of 150 numbered copies on white vinyl, it leaves you dying to know what the Xing series has coming next. Not to be missed!