Alessandro Cortini is Back with More “Kaleidoscopic Melancholia”
Alessandro Cortini will release SCURO CHIARO, a new album, via Mute in June.
SCURO CHIARO is Cortini’s second album for Mute, following 2019’s VOLUME MASSIMO, an album of “kaleidoscopic melancholia.” With this work he developed a process that would be carried into his new album.
We’re told that SCURO CHIARO comes from a place that “delights in the affirmation of life’s constant variations,” and that it simultaneously presents both bewilderment and vulnerability with its somber hues and pulsing, synthetic surfaces. There’s a great volatility across the album, we’re told, and its beauty lies in its contradictions. The abrasive elements that cycle in and out of focus all find resolution in the warm ambiences that crackle and hiss into life in the background of every track.
“I think that the emphasis on the therapeutic element of the record is really important as that’s the way that it was created,” Cortini says. “I think I’m trying to make who I am artistically fit with who I am as a human being as much as possible, and for the two things not to fight each other, just to collaborate in order to reach happiness. I think at the end that’s all that matters, it’s just finding a way to be balanced as a human being.”
The album’s title plays on the term for heavily contrasting light and shadow in painting and other visual arts. It’s the opposite of chiaroscuro, the use of light and shadow to give strong contrast, “and in a way it shows that no matter how you order things there’s always going to be two elements that tend to be the opposite of each other that make up the truth, or make up everything,” Cortini explains.
For Cortini, this is best captured in “CHIAROSCURO,” the lead single, which is available to stream below. It represents the record and where Cortini was emotionally, we’re told.
Cortini recently collaborated with electronic musical instrument manufacturer Make Noise to create a bespoke instrument and effects unit, Strega. Cortini describes it as a “successful attempt to condense my sonic aesthetic into a music making box,” and he incorporated the unit across the album.
For more information on Cortini and specifically the instruments behind his work, check out his Studio Essentials feature with XLR8R here.
03. LO SPECCHIO
SCURO CHIARO LP is scheduled for June 11 release. Meanwhile, you can pre-order here and stream “CHIAROSCURO” in full below.