ALBUM TITLE: Bertolozzi
WORKS: Tower Music
PERFORMER: Joseph Bertolozzi (Eiffel Tower)
CATALOGUE NO: 933
Most people wouldn’t consider the Eiffel Tower a musical instrument. But then most people aren’t Joseph Bertolozzi, an American composer, organist and percussionist who cut his teeth in 2007 ‘playing’ the Mid Hudson Bridge, near Poughkeepsie to create Bridge Music. Tower Music is similar in form: a suite of pieces assembled on the computer from some 10,000 field samples generated from contact mikes, a range of mallets, and every possible metal surface of the Eiffel Tower, from girders, rivets and safety fences to the scraped stair gratings behind the second-floor sales boutique.
As you’d expect, sustained melodies and the legato caress aren’t the Eiffel Tower’s thing. But if you love kinetic percussion carnivals and rhythmical jigging, sometimes reminiscent of Cage’s early bash-ups, there’s much to enjoy, at last for a few spins.