«Casa Murada» is a cross-generational encounter between two highly innovative percussionists – veteran Italian-American Andrea Centazzo, known for his collaborations with John Zorn, Steve Lacy, Don Cherry, Fred Frith, Henry Kaiser and Alvin Curran, founder of the Ictus label, and a generation younger, Spanish-Portuguese Vasco Trilla, known for his collaborations with European free-improvisers as Martin Küchen, Luís Vicente and Mikołaj Trzaska. Trilla initiated this meeting and was complimented by Centazzo who found himself «in the same situation of many other great percussion meetings I got in the past with Tony Oxley, Andrew Cyrille, Barry Altschul, Pierre Favre». The recording took place at the La Casa Murada studio, a studio inside a 12th-century old fortified house, in the Catalan village of Banyeres del Penedès in November 2019, later mixed and edited by Centazzo at his Ictus Studio in Long Beach, California.
Centazzo and Trilla have different approaches to percussion and, obviously, totally different sets of instruments. Centazzo plays as if he is a soloist, leading an orchestral outfit while Trilla opts for a free sound approach and enjoys producing percussive sounds from innocent objects. Centazzo, in his short liner notes, describes himself as «the old savior» in this duo while Trilla is the «the young enthusiast», but they play as true equals. Needless to say, both are highly inventive improvisers, who clearly developed an immediate affinity and a common language, and do not bind themselves to any rule, convention, or percussive matter.
They begin this generous recording, lasting almost eighty minutes, with an enigmatic, ceremonial introduction to their first-ever meeting, playing on resonating surfaces, objects, and prepared piano strings, already with a sense of natural playfulness and a strong poetic sense. Slowly the interplay varies and more nuances and colors are introduced to their creative palette of vibrating sounds and their highly attentive interplay. Centazzo and Trilla know how to suggest a subtle tension, offer introspective timbral searches, but also know how to keep loose architectures and to form elusive textures, always spiced with ironic twists. They refer to light industrial and busy urban sounds on the fourth piece; sketch an exotic, meditative texture that later turns to be urgent and tense on the fifth piece or a gentle, playful song on the sixth piece; create an atmospheric, almost psychedelic soundscape on the seventh and an ethereal ambient soundscape on the eighth piece; return to a playful, game-like, inventive discourse on the ninth piece, including imitation of Indian tabla percussive sounds. This recording is concluded with a dense, noisy, and talkative – literally – texture that distills many creative and inventive aspects of this fascinating and invigorating collaboration.
Andrea Centazzo (perc, mallet kat, samp, prep. p), Vasco Trilla (dr, perc, obj)