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Sound Poetry is discipline which developed over the course of the 20th century. Firmly located between the worlds of fine-art and music, it places its emphasis on the sound and structure of words - the phonetic aspects of human speech, over explicit meaning. Of all the avant-garde and experimental creatives practices, it is unquestionably the most neglected. Its efforts remain almost entirely unknown beyond circles of devoted fans. Despite this, its has been remarkably influential. The Beat poets drew heavily on its efforts, as did seminal composers from John Cage to Joan La Barbara, Laurie Anderson, Meredith Monk, and Arthur Russell, not to mention fine-artists like Bruce Nauman, Vito Acconci, and John Baldessari. It is the unnamed seed for some of most important and game-changing creative accomplishments to have emerged over the course of the last hundred years.
While the beginnings of Sound Poetry can be traced to Futurism and Dada during the first part of the 20th century, the practice didn’t fully hit its stride until the years following the Second World - taken to new heights by figures like Henri Chopin, Bob Cobbing, Franz Mon, Brion Gysin, Ernst Jandl, and Bernard Heidsieck, all of whom featured on the seminal collection Poesia Sonora, issued by the Italian division of CBS during 1975, curated and edited by Maurizio Nannucci, one of the most representative artists in the fields of Italian conceptual and analytical art.
For nearly half a century, this LP has remained among the movement’s most important documents - among the only to accurately depict its character as a crucial, global movement. Long overdue for reissue, in Song Cylce’s hands, it reemerges as a remarkably fresh, conversant survey - a rippling sea of sound, drawing on the hidden range possessed by the human voice, with its unquestionable potential for meaning beyond the territories of language. A vision of creativity and humanity of singular and unique depth, Poesia Sonora features a cast of the most important players in this crucial, historic movement - a flowering which remans tragically unrecognised. Absolutely essential on every count for any fan of sound-art, poetry, the voice, or experimental and avant-garde music. For those interested in exploring this stunning context further, we also highly recommend checking out Vinyl on Demand’s two recent survey’s of the work of Henri Chopin, Bernard Heidsieck’s Poeme-Partition X, and Brion Gysin’s Bruits Du Beaubourg and Poems of poems