In 2016 I collaborated with IRCAM and Renault on the signature of the Renault Trezor engine sound. You can listen to the engine sound it in this teaser (mixed with music) :
Or, with more details, in the following video, where I used in-car-camera footage to have a visual ground to help me develop the race-car components of the sound :
The sound of the Trezor is based on the Zoé sound signature, which we created in 2010/2011, but features a different personality, somewhat unpredictable and dangerous, with traces of combustion race engines, meant to evoke the voice of the great sport cars of the 60s and 70s.
A new collaboration with ricci/forte, presented in July 2017 at the Festival dei Due Mondi in Spoleto. The music used in this trailer is inspired by the soundtracks of Dario Argento’s movies, and slowly degraded using Open Music. Listen to the whole track here :
In 2016 and 2017 I collaborated with Antonio Camurri’s team (University of Genova / Dipartimento di Informatica, Bioingegneria, Robotica e Ingegneria dei Sistemi), imagining strategies for the sonification of expressive qualities of dance.
This is an example of the sonification system we designed (EyesWeb and MaxMSP) at work in “Esodi”, a choreography by Virgilio Sieni (Genova, Palazzo Reale, 27.03.2017). “Esodi” is a performance for a large number of non-professional dancers (citizens of Genova). We used the sonifications to create a form of cohesion among performers located in different rooms of the Palazzo.
The sonification system is based on these features : EyesWeb part 1 : analysis of Fluidity, Lightness, Fragility, and other features. MaxMSP : sonification of each quality (2 granular engines, 2 microloops engines, 1 [agents + emerging behavior] engine). EyesWeb part 2 : mixing of the sonification channels, based on Salience.
This is another example of the full sonification process. The dancer is Virgilio Sieni.
Another example : in this case, we were working on the analysis and sonification of fragility.
Back to my roots : contemporary dance and the pleasure of exploring whatever musical form the project may hint at (in this case, improvisations with an old EKO Ekomaster 400 found in a garage sale, coupled with a few drum samples – to be played very loud).
This is the trailer of the new work by ricci/forte, “PPP – ultimo inventario prima di liquidazione (hommage à Pier Paolo Pasolini)” – for them I prepared soundscapes and a few songs, like the one used in this video. These guys are CRAZY and it’s really fun working with them.
In the frame of the Skat-VG project, I was invited with four other fellows sound designers to create sketches for the sonification of an artwork from the collection of the Chateau La Coste (in South France), using Skat-VG technology (synthesis controlled by voice).
This is my choice (“AIX”, sculpture by Richard Serra) and the sketch I concocted. All sounds are SDT (Sound Design Toolkit) and Mubu/CataRT, except for a sample of breeze through leaves that I layered in the mix (along with the synthetic wind from the SDT) to confound the listener about what is real and what not.
I imagined that we are in a not too distant future where the Gate Machines sprayed the world with swarms of metallic audio nano-agents, changing forever the natural soundscape. The passage in the sky of the Gate Machines woke up their ancestors, and they are calling them. http://skatvg.iuav.it/ http://chateau-la-coste.com/ http://soundobject.org/SDT/ http://imtr.ircam.fr/imtr/Corpus_Based_Synthesis
recording session with vintage switches, bell alarms, morse devices, bakelite objects
ANDREA CERA – WORKS 2015 – PINK SQUIRRELS
A personal, small, independent project : Pink Squirrels (in collaboration with curator Steve Paterson of Plakart and artist/videomaker Dimitrjie Roggero).
The Pink Squirrels project is a near-future fiction, about the suicide of our culture, a ritual performed according to the laws of invasive entertainment. It depicts the damaged brain of a person affected by the “Tom Cruise Enacting Script Disorder”, an imaginary personality disorder [ http://www.plakart.org/pink-squirrelsI2.html ], in a post-catastrophe Italy, among the last living persons, mentally and physically destroyed by the evolution of more and more penetrating forms of entertainment. The not-so-distant ills described in the text are : the “Compulsory Fitness Syndrome”, the damages inflicted by new psychotropics twisted drinks, the “Portfolio Tactile Feedback” market crash in Chinese stock markets, the effect on adolescents of the the “Simu-Suicide” kits, the “Tele-Me Syndrome” [ http://www.plakart.org/pink-squirrelsH4.html ].
ANDREA CERA – WORKS 2015 : A CHRISTMAS EVE
I composed the music for “A Christmas Eve“ (ricci/forte + TLS Belli, conductor Marco Angius) : this is a gripping tale of domestic violence, the story of two sisters and their dying, violent father. The text is written by Ricci/Forte, a duo of Italian directors, known for their uncompromising approach, violence, and attitude towards risk.
And risk is what it’s all about in this work, starting from the unusual logistics of the creation (I blindly wrote materials for months, having just some hints about the themes, to have to reconfigure everything in just three frantic weeks), to the experiments with the singers. The singers are young, talented artists, from baroque or classical repertoire : I asked them to forget everything they learned, and to experiment the uncomfortable non-lieu where the whispering crosses the vocal production. This zone produces wonderful artifacts, speaks of the body and of deep seated emotions, but is also profoundly contrasting with the way a classical singer normally projects sound and creates a representation of the self.
ANDREA CERA – WORKS 2015 – SOUND OF MUSIC
I created the soundtrack for “Sound of Music” by Yan Duyvendak). A work inspired by Broadway musicals, where extremely grim lyrics describing the end of our civilization are used in songs which musically synthesize the happiness, the joy, the optimism which are the trademark of the musical comedy.
My job here was to create songs and arrangements which had to sound atemporal, too much corny, artificial. The singers were a great cast from Germany, which embodied each song with the stardom, the gloss, the everlasting smile that only the showbiz can provide.
Needless to say that I had gigantic fun jumping from a genre to another, quoting everything I know, hiding bouts of melodies, chord sequences, arrangement topoi from songs ranging from the 40’s to the 80’s, and to mimic the sounds of the worst Muzak we are fed intravenously day and night.