The Squid's Ear Magazine
Squidco's Memorial Day Sale, Save 10% to 15% Fri-Monday!

Armaroli, Sergio (w/ Fritz Hauser): Prismo (ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

The quartet of Sergio Armaroli (vibraphone), Martina Brodbeck (cello), Francesca Gemmo (piano), and Fritz Hauser (drums & percussion), also heard in free improvisational duos and trios, perform Armaroli's "Structuring the Silence", aiming to extend the performers' improvisational freedom using time and space through broad compositional instructions.

Price: $17.05
Price Was: $18.95
Squidco Memorial Day Sale!:
Save $1.90


In Stock

Quantity in Basket: None

Log In to use our Wish List
Shipping Weight: 2.00 units

Sample The Album:

product information:


Sergio Armaroli-vibraphone

Martina Brodbeck-cello

Francesca Gemmo-piano

Fritz Hauser-drums, percussion

Click an artist name above to see in-stock items for that artist.

UPC: 752156102229

Label: ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd
Catalog ID: ezz-thetics 1022
Squidco Product Code: 29815

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2020
Country: Switzerland
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold
Recorded at "Il Pollaio" Studio; Recording by Piergiorgio Miotto, Ronco Biellese (Biella) on April 27-28, 2019; CD-master by Peter Pfister; Cover photo by Hans Stockhausen; graphic concept by fuhrer vienna; Liner notes by Andy Hamilton; Recording produced by Sergio Armaroli; Associate producer: Christian C. Dalucas, Executive producer: Werner X. Uehlinger.

Descriptions, Reviews, &c.

"Percussionist Fritz Hauser, a member of the quartet on this recording, has long been fascinated by silence: "Developing sounds out of silence, fading into silence, stopping a cymbal crescendo to let the silence explode into space," he explains. The composition they perform, Sergio Armaroli's Structuring The Silence Extended (2019), is an essay in Cageian themes. It follows Armaroli's 2017 release Structuring The Silence, in which he was partnered by Fritz Hauser. Armaroli explains that "I intended to broaden the improvisation experience by incorporating a typically Cagean conception of time and space...for Cage silence is the world, what we do not control".

Music is a sounding, vibrating phenomenon, patterns of intentionally-produced sound that begin and end in silence. If architecture is the articulation of space, then music is the articulation of silence. "Articulation" is not just enclosure - it means both "expresses" and "breaks up". It also suggests that the space, or silence, is not pre-existing, but created. In these artistic senses, space and silence are not an observer-neutral Newtonian plenum, but human creations. (Kant's understanding of space as mind-dependent, and Einstein's understanding of observer-relativity, may be less alien to the artistic picture.) Silence frames the musical performance, but also occurs within it, as a result of music's humanly physical status. Music-making traditionally involves blowing, plucking, stroking, vocalising and other actions, which produce non-continuous sound and therefore silences.

According to the modern philosopher of silence, John Cage, total silence does not exist - any more than a total vacuum does. Cage's concern with silence was stimulated by his visit to Harvard University's echo-free anechoic chamber. Its walls, ceiling and floor, lined with sound-absorbent material, minimised reflection and insulated the room from external noise. In the room one hears only direct sound, with no reverberation - an unsettling and disorienting experience. Cage heard a high sound, and a low one - the engineer explained afterwards that these were his nervous system, and his blood circulation.

For Cage, all sound, including silence, is music; he concluded that he was creating music unintentionally and continuously. Hence 4' 33", in which form became emptiness, emptiness became form. It is not really a silent piece, as it features contingent ambient sound. At the première, Cage recalled, "You could hear the wind stirring outside during the first movement. During the second, raindrops began pattering the roof, and during the third people themselves made all kinds of interesting sounds as they talked or walked out."

Cage's philosophical claims need contextualising. On a liberal, postmodern definition, any sound can be music. But the definition is parasitic on the existence of traditional music - an art of tones, of relatively fixed and enduring pitched sounds. As with conceptual and readymade visual art, we couldn't respond to Cage's 4' 33", if we had not experienced traditional music- making. Aesthetic responses to non-musical sound are parasitic on aesthetic responses to tonal sound - and arguably, 4' 33" is soundart rather than music.

Armaroli's Structuring The Silence addresses Cageian themes while making connections with more traditional music-making - in particular, through the art of improvisation which the American maverick professed to reject. Armaroli argues that Cage discovered its value late in his career, through collaboration with improvisers like Fritz Hauser, for whom he wrote one of his Number Pieces. The score for Structuring The Silence develops Cage's technique in those Pieces, in which "time is conceived as a possible container of musical form." In the Number pieces, Cage's focus is on duration rather than rhythm, and this is another factor that makes his work soundart rather than music - though the boundary between these categories is always contestable. And I'd reiterate that Armaroli's work has more affinities with traditional music-making - the performances on this recording are clearly tonal and rhythmic.

Armaroli was born in Italy in 1972, and lives in Milan. He is a painter, poet and "percussionist concrète", who's worked with Sylvano Bussotti, Alvin Curran, Walter Prati and Elliott Sharp. Hauser, born in 1953 in Basel, composes for solo percussion, percussion ensembles, chamber orchestra and choir. He's created sound installations and music for films, and works with architects and choreographers. For this recording, the Armaroli-Hauser partnership becomes Quartet Prismo, with Francesca Gemmo, Italian pianist and composer, and Martina Brodbeck, principal cellist of the basel-sinfonietta. Here, Armaroli plays vibraphone, and Hauser percussion.

Armaroli's score is conceptual, containing instructions such as: "Choose nine sounds (or groups of nine sounds) in the order: 9 + 9 + 9...with fixed characteristics (amplitude, tempo, overtone structure, duration, etc.) and nine elements: gestures, intention, words and other suggestion(s) etc." Durations and dynamics are free: "The sounds to be made are long and short or very short. Instruments can play alone, duo or trio." Four instruments are specified: drums, cello, piano and vibraphone.

A score such as this invites the question: When does interpretation become improvisation? Conceptual and graphic scores undermine the distinction, and this seems especially true for Structuring The Silence. Influenced by Cage's ideas of duration, silence and non-intention, the quartet's exploratory quest and fragile balance results in music that perhaps sounds improvised - but they convey the rightness and certainty of the most persuasive composition. Gemmo's quicksilver and delicate piano figurations, Armaroli's sonorous vibraphone, Brodbeck's classical and jazzy cello and Hauser's protean, sometimes explosive percussion make for a soundworld that is tantalisingly liminal. If pressed on whether a performance "sounds improvised", often I'd ask, "It depends what you mean by improvisation and composition - because improvisation is itself a method of composition, in the sense of putting things together in an aesthetically pleasing way". These sensitive performances bear out that important uncertainty."-Andy Hamilton, 2019

Artist Biographies

"Sergio Armaroli is a composer, percussionist, vibraphonist, teacher and total artist. His actions resonate through various artistic and musical fields, that of jazz being, perhaps, his most practised. He declares himself to be a painter, concrete percussionist, fragmentary poet and sound artist as well as founding his work "within the language of jazz and improvisation" as an "extension of the concept of art"."

-Sergio Armaroli Website (

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Martina Brodbeck was born in Basel and studied violoncello at the Musikakademie Basel under Thomas Demenga. After an additional course at the Koninklijk Conservatorium Den Haag under Michael Müller, she obtained the concert diploma with distinction at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater Biel/Bern under Conradin Brotbek. She followed the master classes of Peter Buck, Reinhard Latzko, Jaap ter Linden and Pieter Wispelway

Martina Brodbeck is a member of the Basel-Sinfonietta and solo violoncellist with the Aargauer Kammerorchester. She is particularly active in the field of contemporary music and plays with chamber music ensembles in Europe, Asia and the United States. She has made radio and CD recordings."

-The NEC (

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Francesca Gemmo is a pianist, composer and teacher.

She graduated in Piano at the "FE Dall'Abaco" Conservatory in Verona, her city of origin, and in Composition at the "Giuseppe Verdi" Conservatory in Milan; in the same Conservatory he subsequently obtained the II level Academic Diploma for teaching Piano.

She has obtained significant prizes and awards in national piano competitions and her repertoire ranges from Baroque to contemporary music.

Her concert activity has led her to play in prestigious halls in Italy and abroad (Sale Apollinee in Venice, Center Le Phenix in Friborg, Konzerthaus in Weimar, Mudima Foundation in Milan, Museo del Novecento in Milan, Arsenale Theater in Milan , Seismic Area).

The attention to paths of experimentation and improvisation has favored her collaboration with authoritative artists such as Sergio Armaroli, Alvin Curran, Brunhild Meyer-Ferrari, Steve Piccolo, Walter Prati, Giancarlo Schiaffini, Elliott Sharp, Fritz Hauser.

As a composer she has to her credit several performances by important soloists and ensembles such as Irvine Arditti, Luca Avanzi, Sergio Scappini, Divertimento Ensemble, Trio Matisse; moreover, works have been commissioned from authoritative instrumentalists such as guitarist Magnus Andersson and saxophonist Daniel Kientzy."

-Francesca Gemmo Website (

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Fritz Hauser , born 1953 in Basel / Switzerland develops solo programs for drums and percussion, he brings the world to the performance. Compositions for percussion ensembles and soloists, chamber orchestra, choir. Sound installations (including Therme Vals , Architecture Museum Basel , Castel Burio Italy, Kunsthaus train , Fondation van Gogh in Arles, University of Zurich, radio plays, music for films and readings. Interdisciplinary Working with the lighting designer Brigitte Dubach, director Barbara Frey, the architect Boa Baumannand the choreographer Kinsun Chan, Joachim Schloemer, Heddy Maalem and Anna Huber. In the field of percussion playing and working with percussion soloists and ensembles around the world: Kroumata , Steven Schick , Keiko Abe , Synergy Percussion , Michael Askill , Speak Percussion , Bob Becker , Nexus, EnsembleXII , we spoke . Numerous CDs as a soloist and with various ensembles. Fritz Hauser's cultural award in 2012 the city of Basel and culture prize winner Music Basel-Country in 1996. In the summer of 2018 was Hauser "composer-in-residence" at the Lucerne Festival in 2018."

-Fritz Hauser Website (

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

Track Listing:

1. Quartetto Cinque 3:39

2. Trio Due 5:03

3. Trio Uno 3:39

4. Duo Sette 1:40

5. Duo Cinque 2:10

6. Duo Due 3:28

7. Quartetto Quattro 2:03

8. Structuring The Silence Extended 30:13

9. Duo Quattro 3:41

10. Duo Quattro 4:38

11. Quartetto Sei 7:54

Related Categories of Interest:

Hat Art
Improvised Music
Free Improvisation
European Improvisation, Composition and Experimental Forms
Saxophone & Drummer / Percussionist Duos
Duo Recordings
Hat Hut Masters Sale

Search for other titles on the label:
ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd.

Recommended & Related Releases:
Hauser, Fritz / Pedro Carneiro
Pas de Deux
(Clean Feed)
A first encounter between Swiss drummer Fritz Hauser and Portuguese marimba master Pedro Carneiro, the title translating roughly to "step of two", implying a dance heard in elusively minimal yet highly active interactions between the two, each progressively numbered work borrowing from improvisational and contemporary approaches; fascinatingly sophisticated and often joyful work.
Hauser, Fritz
Laboratorio - Solo Percussion
(Hat [now] ART)
Swiss drummer & percussionist Fritz Hauser's solo album creates a fictional percussion center that he uses as as springboard to compose solo works for spaces within the [non-existent] environment, depicted in both spacious and active sound work, generating open-air locations with bird sounds and cymbals and areas of quick-paced activity; absolutely impressive.
Other Recommended Releases:
Gerszewski, Nikolaus
3 Works For Strings, Giusto Chamber Orchestra
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
Giusto Chamber Orchestra performs three works for twelve strings by German composer and visual artist Nikolaus Gerszewski, whose music of shifting pitches, vibrations and volumes--compared with experimental sound & noise work--is influenced by composers Radulescu and Dumitrescu's spectral music, James Tenney's "swell form" and Cornelius Cardew's graphic scores.
Inoue, Satoko / Jo Kondo
Presents Jo Kondo's Works for Piano, 2015-2020
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
The third album of piano works from Japanese composer Jo Kondo performed by pianist Satoko Inoue, known for her interpretations of Morton Feldman, John Cage, Luc Ferrari, &c., here performing Kondo works written between 2013 and 2020 that apply different methods and approaches to form and interpretation, including works that incorporate improvisation and choices left to the performer.
Armaroli, Sergio / Evan Parker
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
Recording remotely in a call-and-response, vibraphonist Sergio Armaroli and saxophonist Evan Parker resolved an issue of recording in the same physical space by interleaving recordings of solo improvisations recorded in response to each other's sequential recordings, Armaroli with the 6-part "Two Rooms One Vibraphone" and Parker with the 5-part "Interludes".
Hauser, Fritz / Pedro Carneiro
Pas de Deux
(Clean Feed)
A first encounter between Swiss drummer Fritz Hauser and Portuguese marimba master Pedro Carneiro, the title translating roughly to "step of two", implying a dance heard in elusively minimal yet highly active interactions between the two, each progressively numbered work borrowing from improvisational and contemporary approaches; fascinatingly sophisticated and often joyful work.
Armaroli, Sergio (Armaroli / Minton / Schiaffini / Turner)
I Dream I Was An Earopean
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
Two percussionists--vibraphonist Sergio Armaroli and drummer/percussionist Roger Turner-- and two brass players--trombonist Giancarlo Schiaffini and trumpeter Phil Minton, who doubles on voice improvisation--are heard in these studio recordings from Udine, Italy for nine "Dreams" that turn introspective slumber into restless visions through profoundly paced playing.
Sanna, Claudio
Compositori Sardi Contemporanei [2 CDs]
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
An astonishingly diverse album of solo piano works performed by pianist and composer Claudio Sanna, performing works from eight Sardinian composers including his own, weaving improvisation, acousmatic & musique concrete elements, turntablism, electronics, inside piano playing, chalk-board writing and more into lyrical and experimental pieces that flow together exquisitely.
Armaroli, Sergio / Steve Piccolo / Elliott Sharp
What Went Wrong
(Leo Records)
The fifth album on Leo Records for vibraphonist Sergio Armaroli, and his second with NY guitarist, saxophonist & electronic artist Elliott Sharp and bassist Steve Piccolo, using lyrical interpretations of jazz standards as a jumping off point for experimental and unusual approaches to improvisation, a unique balancing point in a fascinating collection.
Armaroli, Sergio / Steve Piccolo / Elliott Sharp
Blue In Mind
(Leo Records)
An unusual blend of jazz tradition, spoken word and soundscape, presenting mostly as a jazz album with spoken narration from Steve Piccolo (Lounge Lizards) guiding the album with abstract comments that interject with Sergio Armaroli's virtuoso vibe playing, Elliot Sharp adding both acoustic sax elements and inventive sonic environments underpinning many moments; conceptually fascinating.
Fox, Christopher
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
Three works from English composer Christopher Fox performed by the five-member Ensemble SEV, with two renderings of his work "This is the Wind" along with three duos, each combining two of a set of six "Paralogos", a solo work for violin--"Planes and Folds"--and the title piece "Hieroglyph" about decoding the incomprehensibility of unfamiliar music.
Wegmann, Judith / Marlies Debacker / Lukas Biner / Nicolas Wolf
Things In Between
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
Featuring two pianists--Judith Wegmann and Marlies Debacker--and two percussionists--Lukas Briner and Nicolas Wolf (a duo who play concerts in the dark under the name of Night Shadow Noise)--in collective improvisations of two pianists or as a quartet of duel pianists and drummers, for seven exciting and sophisticated recordings of instant composition.
Feldman, Morton (Judith Wegmann / Andreas Kunz)
For John Cage [2 CDs]
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
First performed in 1982, Morton Feldmans' monumental composition for piano and violin dedicated to peer John Cage creates a distinctive environment of instrumental interaction where patterns are subtly varied in a virtual suspension of time as the music drifts and reflects, beautifully rendered in this 2021 recording by pianist Judith Wegmann and violinist Andreas Kunz.
Schmid, Silvan
Augmented Space
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
Swiss trumpeter Silvan Schmid (Silvan Schmid Quintett, London Improvisers Orchestra, Floor Poodle, &c) in a solo album of remarkable technique, pacing and intention, using traditional brass elements like rips, smears, half-valved notes and portamento, along with murmurs, pops & percussive evocations of indescribable origination, at times augmented via amplification.

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought:
Mingus, Charles
Presents Charles Mingus To Pre Bird, Revisited
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
Three sides of Charles Mingus in this remastered reissue set: the 1961 Candid album Mingus Presents Mingus with the classic quartet of Eric Dolphy, Ted Curson and Dannie Richmond; then the Mercury release Pre-Bird from the same year, in ensembles performing the music of or influenced by Duke Ellington, along with the ambitious and brilliant through-composed work, "Half Mast Inhibition".
Smith, Ches
Laugh Ash
(Pyroclastic Records)
A stunning album that effortlessly blends styles from jazz, electronics, minimalism and contemporary forms, rendered by an eclectic group of primarily NY artists including Nate Wooley, Jennifer Choi, James Brandin Lews, Oscar Noriega, Anna Webber, Shahzad Ismaily and Smith himself, in an exhilarating and well-balanced set of Smith compositions that inform and groove spectacularly!
Tamarisk (Carter / Menestres / Weathers)
House of the People, Property is Theft
(Editions Glomar)
The Tamarisk trio of bassist David Menestres, guitarist Andrew Weathers and vocalist Christina Carter (Charalambides) are heard live at Casa del Popolo, in Montreal and at PIT, in Brooklyn, New York, joined in Brooklyn by flutist Laura Cocks, each performance an extended journey between assertive, cathartic improvisation and introspective rumination.
Wooley, Nate
(Editions Verde)
Nate Wooley's exquisite improvised composition begins with a musical gesture and four parameters of change from each player--harmonic motion, articulation, extension, & physicality--which directs their "flight" in its slowly evolving pace, creating a varying mosaic of sound, as beautifully rendered by Laura Cocks (flute), Madison Greenstone (clarinet) and Eric Wubbels (keys & voice).
[ism] (Pat Thomas / Joel Grip / Aontonin Gerbal)
(577 Records)
Recordings from the Berlin club Au Topsi Pohl where the [ism] piano trio of Pat Thomas on piano, Joel Grip on double bass and Antonin Gerbal on drums played 4-nights in a row, May 18-21, 2022, Thomas performing on a Bösendorfer grand piano, creating an omnipresent and precise sound that drove the band to great heights of interactive, warmly diverse playing.
CALATO / John Cage
Variations + Four6
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
Calato, the quartet of Javier Areal Vélez, Jorge Espinal, Agustín Genoud and Pablo Verón based in Buenos Aires, formed in 2010 as an improvisation and experimental composition group exploring music notation and graphic scores in convergence with free improvisation, performing on prepared electric guitars, drums, sampler and amplified voice, here taking on two works by John Cage: Variations I-III, and Four6.
Parker, Charlie
At Birdland 1950 "Revisited"
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
A remarkable feat of remastering, sound restoration and pitch correction from the tapes of this June 1950 radio broadcast at Birdland in NYC, finding the exceptional quintet of jazz pioneers led by alto saxophonist Charlie Parker in superb form, with Fats Navarro on trumpet, Bud Powell on piano, Curley Russell on double bass and Art Blakey on drums.
Gillespie, Dizzy & Charlie Parker
Live, Revisited
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
Three essential concerts remastered, from the legacy of be-bop trailblazers, trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie and alto saxophonist Charlie Parker, with Don Byas, Al Haig piano, Curley Russell, Max Roach & Sidney Catlett at Town Hall 1945; with John Lewis, Al McKibbon & Joe Harris at Carnegie Hall 1947; and with Bud Powell, Tommy Potter & Roy Haynes at Birdland 1951.
Sun Ra
Space Is The Place [2 CDs + BLURAY + DVD + BOOKLET]
(Modern Harmonic)
Digitally restoring and expanding on Sun Ra's 1972 soundtrack for the film of the same name, in a solid box set with two audio CDs, a DVD and BluRay + bonus featuures of the original film, along with a previously unreleased album recorded at the same soundtrack sessions, The Mathematics Of The Altered Destiny, and a booklet with notes from multiple Afrofuturism scholars.
Ayler, Albert
Summertime To Spiritual Unity, Revisited
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
Remastering and reissuing two tracks--"Summertime" and "C.T"--from saxophonist Albert Ayler's 1964 Fontana album My Name Is Albert Ayler with basssist Nils-Henning Orsted Pedersen, drummer Ronnie Gardiner and pianist Nils Bronsted; and his classic and passionate 1965 ESP Disk release Spiritual Unity with double bassist Gary Peacock and drummer Sunny Murray.
Shepp, Archie
Four For Trane To Live At Newport - Revisited
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
Influenced by and working with John Coltrane, saxophonist and composer Archie Shepp paid tribute to 'Trane with his 1965 Impulse! album Four for Trane, here remastered and joined with tracks from the live album John Coltrane/Archie Shepp: New Thing At Newport, accompanied on each by acclaimed free jazz players including Roswell Rudd, John Tchicai, Reggie Workman, Barre Phillips, Joe Chambers, &c.
Dolphy, Eric
Outward Bound To Out To Lunch Revisited
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)
Arriving in NY in 1959, saxophonist, flute & bass clarinetist Eric Dolphy joined some of the finest avant jazz players, releasing his 1st album as a leader in 1960--Outward Bound--with Freddie Hubbard, Jaki Byard, George Tucker & Roy Haynes; subsequently tagged as an anti-jazz musician, it would be 4 years before his masterwork Out To Lunch would be released, both albums here reissued & remastered.

The Squid's Ear Magazine

The Squid's Ear Magazine

© 2002-, Squidco LLC