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Silva, Susana Santos

All The Birds And A Telephone Ringing [VINYL]

Silva, Susana Santos: All The Birds And A Telephone Ringing [VINYL] (thanatosis produktion)

Aside from her exceptional trumpet work in free improvisation settings, Portuguese trumpeter Susana Santos, currently based in Stockholm, is also an electro-acoustic composer, these six compelling compositions merging field recordings--particularly birds, waters and yes, a phone--along with her trumpet playing and Irish flute, the album title a reference to John Cage's book Silence.

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product information:

UPC: 7320470260395

Label: thanatosis produktion
Catalog ID: THT18LP
Squidco Product Code: 32478

Format: LP
Condition: New
Released: 2022
Country: Sweden
Packaging: LP
Recorded In Stockholm And Porto, August to December, 2021, By Susana Santos Silva


Susana Santos Silva-trumpet, Irish flute, field recordings

Rosanna Gunnarson-field recordings

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Descriptions, Reviews, &c.

"The Portuguese trumpeter Susana Santos Silva has firmly established herself in the upper echelons of jazz and improvised music, a musician of lyric imagination and technical ferocity with deep historical perspective. Based in Stockholm, Sweden-where she's currently studying electro-acoustic composition at the Royal College of Music-Silva is an inveterate collaborator, turning to artistic partnerships to constantly explore new sonic terrain. She works with pianist Kaja Draksler in a duo as well as the quartet Hearth with Ada Rave and Mette Rasmussen, she's played in Fire! Orchestra, participated in many projects with bassist Torbjorn Zetterberg, and worked with legendary figures like Fred Frith and Anthony Braxton, in addition to leading several bands of her own.

In recent years Silva has expanded her artistic scope, creating vivid sound collages that meticulously blend field recordings, electronics, and her authoritative trumpet playing that extend her interest in narrative and wordless storytelling. Her new Thanatosis album All The Birds And A Telephone Ringing features the most accomplished and sophisticated iteration of this new practice, starting with her deep interest in the variegated relationships that exist between the natural world and the human beings that inhabit it. The album title was inspired by a line in John Cage's classic book Silence, and Silva embraces many of his theories on sound and listening. "This album is about the relationship between nature and humans," she says. "It's connected to the climate problems that we are facing, and the way society lives. It's all wrong, the world is completely upside down. How we interact, how we affect the world around us, and how the world around us affects us, and our practices. It's about how everything I listen to around me affects, influences, inspires the music. What we hear around us is already music itself."

In 2019 Silva was approached by the Belgian imprint Matiere Memoire to contribute a piece to its MMXX series, joining an impressive roster of artists working heavily with electronic music. "I kind of got inspired and I thought, why don't I try to do something with electronics?" she recalls. "Something different, because I got a little bit bored of only playing the trumpet and I had already tried to get a lot of sounds that are not exactly idiomatic for the instrument. I tried to go into these extended techniques as much as possible, but I still wanted more. I just felt the need to expand the palette and use all kinds of sounds." That 2020 piece, "Sometimes It's Raining a Lot" opened up a new world for Silva, making use of the field recordings she'd spent years collecting. She followed that up with From the Ground Birds are Born, a shape-shifting organ-drenched meditation for the Superpang label in 2021 even further removed from the free jazz and improvised music that she's best known for.

Still, Silva insists that the process behind these more electronic works isn't so different from her trumpet-based music. "The way I work is very spontaneous, always very intuitive," she says. "The conceptual part of it, is only the starting point and most of the times extramusical. So in this case, it was a relationship between humans and nature. From then on, it's improvised, just trying things out and seeing what I find. If I find something that I like, I explore that thing. These compositions that I do are very improvised as well. I go back and forth, I change things, I experiment." That sense of exploration characterizes the liquid textures she produces on "As One Comes to the World," in which a pair of hydrophones capture the blobby gurgles and unpitched breaths emanating from the bell of her horn submerged beneath the surface of water. Within this limited sound pallet, Silva finds endless variation inside this human intervention with nature, creating a symphonic movement of splashes, clacking trumpet valves, and inchoate breaths. After recording the piece Silva assumed that she would need to shorten the piece, but as she immersed herself in the results, she heard an organic narrative that required no substantial edits, and, indeed, the piece takes on a deeper resonance with every additional listen.

While elements in many of the pieces are obvious-whether the extended techniques on trumpet that open "All the Birds" or the mixture of a creaking ship hull and overheard gulls at the beginning of "The Way Home," Silva prefers to keep the source material a bit mysterious. She wants the listener to fill in the blanks. "If people imagine something completely different, that's great," she says. "The music only ends, or is complete when it's listened to by someone, and that someone is actually finishing the piece. The listener will have their own perception of everything. That's the part I enjoy the most when I listen to music." For Silva this new engagement with electronic production complements her live improvisational approach. "It's all part of composition," she says. "You write for trumpet, oboe, and piano, or you write for trumpet and environmental sounds or trumpet and train station, trumpet and water."

With All The Birds And A Telephone Ringing she vividly demonstrates an ability to transform any sound into a composed work. Silva is complementing the album with a series of videos for each piece using footage shot with her phone, a kind of visual analog to her field recordings."-Thanatosis Produktion

Also available on CD.

Artist Biographies

"Susana Santos Silva is a trumpeter, improviser and composer from Porto, Portugal.

She holds a Master Diploma in Jazz Performance '2010 from Codarts, Rotterdam, where she worked with Eric Vloeimans, Jarmo Hoogendijk and Wim Both.

She holds a Graduate Diploma in Jazz/Trumpet '2008 and in Trumpet '2004 from College of Music and Performing Arts in Porto, attending the last year of the course at the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik Karlsruhe in the class of Prof. Reinhold Friedrich, where she also had baroque trumpet lessons with Prof. Edward Tarr.

She is a member and co-founder of the Porto based jazz musicians association Porta-Jazz and it's label, Carimbo. 
With Coreto, an ensemble of musicians from this association led by João Pedro Brandão, she recorded in 2012 the first album of the label, 'Aljamia'. Two more were released after that, 'Mergulho' and 'Sem Chão'.

In 2011 she releases her first album as a leader of her own Quintet, 'Devil´s Dress' on Tone of a Pitch Records. With this band she played 12 Points Jazz Festival, Dublin in 2011. In 2015 she releases her second album as a leader, 'Impermanence' on Carimbo Porta-Jazz. Life and Other Transient Storms, her new project with Lotte Anker, Sten Sandell, Torbjörn Zetterberg and Jon Falt, premiered last year at Tampere jazz Happening and their new album is now out on Clean Feed Records.

Her other main projects include LAMA, a Rotterdam based trio with portuguese bassist Gonçalo Almeida and canadian drummer Greg Smith, 'Oneiros' (2011), 'Lamaçal' (2013) feat. Chris Speed and 'The Elephant's Journey' feat. Joachim Badenhorst (2015), all released on Clean Feed Records, a duo with swedish bassist Torbjörn Zetterberg, 'Almost Tomorrow' Clean Feed 2013, a duo with the slovenian pianist Kaja Draksler 'This Love' Clean Feed 2015, a duo with drummer Jorge Queijo 'Songs from my Backyard' Wasser Bassin 2013, a collaboration with the belgian trio De Beren Gieren, 'The Detour Fish' Clean Feed 2014, a trio with Torbjörn Zetterberg and the swedish organist Hampus Lindwall 'If Nothing Else' Clean Feed 2015 and a quartet with Christine Wodrascka, Christian Meaas Svendsen and Håkon Berre, 'Rasengan!' (Barefoot Records 2016).

She is also part of João Guimarães Octet, 'Zero' Toap 2014, Torbjörn Zetterberg 'Och Den Stora Frågan' Moserobie 2014, 'Om Liv & Död' Moserobie 2015, and Orquestra Jazz de Matosinhos, with whom she played and recorded with musicians as Lee Konitz, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Chris Cheek, Carla Bley, Steve Swallow, Maria Schneider, among many others.

She was a member of the European Movement Jazz Orchestra, with whom she played in Germany, Slovenia, Austria, Belgium, Portugal and Egipt. The orchestra recorded 'EMJO Live at Coimbra', released in 2011 on Clean Feed Records."

-Susana Santos Silva Website (

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

"Composer and sound artist from Värmdö, Sweden. I make sound art installations and art music pieces for ensembles and orchestras, as well as music to different types of media ranging from tv/film to games. Written works include pieces for Norrbotten Neo, Blåsarsymfonikerna, Södra Latins kammarkör, Elefantöra, Malvakvartetten, Ensemble Kondens, Drottningholm Barock ensemble, Elefantöra, Stockholm Saxophone Quartet, to name few. My practice also includes sound art installations and electronic pieces e.g. a sound sculpture in Lidköpings stadsträdgård (in collaboration with local artist/sculptor Tony Abrahamsson) and a mixed media installation at Stockholm concert hall "Surfing soundwaves - Baltic sea" that was part of the summer exhibition in 2016. A similar installation was commissioned by Swedavia airports in 2017 for Stockholm Arlanda (Terminal 5)."

-Rosanna Gunnarson Website (

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

Track Listing:


1. The Way Home (7:38)

2. Always Arriving Always Departing (4:01)

3. As One Comes To The World (9:31)


1. All The Birds (7:32)

2. And A Telephone Ringing (5:26)

3. For Reasons A Human Cannot Divine (5:13)

Related Categories of Interest:

Vinyl Recordings
Organized Sound and Sample Based Music
Electroacoustic Composition
Compositional Forms
Improvised Music
Field Recordings
Recordings featuring brass instruments - trumpets, trombones, tubas, other horns
Solo Artist Recordings
European Improvisation, Composition and Experimental Forms
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New in Experimental & Electronic Music
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thanatosis produktion.

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