Friday, July 14, 2023

UBQ Underwater Bell Quartet

Cisternino, Puglia, Italy. Saturday 15-July-2023.

We learned of this concert through the town council website otherwise it might have passed us by and I am so glad we did. They were fantastic. Mesmerising and hypnotic. Long form pieces that reminded me of Third Ear Band.

To quote from their publicity:
"The sounds of the Underwater Bell Quartet embrace Mediterranean music in a substantial way. A kind of soundtrack for the southern seas where the essential grace of a boundless music branches out through pieces that become flowing water, blazing fire, shining light. A musical journey that contains within itself the magnificent sound of distant lands where the slow passage of time is synonymous with enchantment. Opening horizons through musical instruments and sounds from other cultures can mean opening one's mind to the vision of a united and supportive humanity."
[translation by Google]

Yet again we sat in PG Il Villa bar - a comfortable place to sit with a good view and sound of the concerts (plus wine). 

Normally I pop to the stage to take a picture and return to my seat. These guys held me entranced at the front so I left Mary in the bar guarding the drinks.

Giuliano Di Cesare: Tromba/flauto traverso/sax soprano/didjeridoo.

Domenico Monaco: Percussioni / elettronica.

Eicoletta D'Auria: Violoncello.

Eric Forsmark: Percussioni.

They do not appear to have any published music which is a pity, I'd buy it. I did record a tiny clip:

At the end of their set they played a couple of short videos of Eric's project Inspiration 101:

101 • FLAME OF INSPIRATION IS A CELEBRATION of what connects and inspires us all as creative human beings. Our ambitious aim is to facilitate the creation of a 55-minute film with original music. It will be a collective composition, involving 101 musicians from at least 35 countries.

Most of these artists do not know each other.


We were able to have a short chat with Erik and tell him in person how great the ensemble was and how impressed we were with his project. We will follow with interest.

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