«…of Late» is the third album of the New york-based J. Pavone String Ensemble, now scaled down to an unconventional trio consisting of composer Jessica Pavone on viola, Abby Swidler on violin and viola, and Aimée Niemann on violin. The Ensemble was founded in 2017 and expands Pavone’s compositional ideas from her extensive solo viola work while incorporating recent research into the effects of sonic vibration on human physiology and emotional health. A much-needed sonic recipe for our current times.
Pavone’s work on concentrated long tone practice and an interest in repetition, song form, and sympathetic vibration, is influenced by folk songs traditions that live largely through oral transmission. This work led to the inception of the Ensemble, where the compositional techniques borrow from and elaborate on traditional music notation wherein Pavone experiments with improvisatory techniques, alternating between metered and time-based scores and improvised and notated instructions. The Ensemble focuses on collective improvisation that prioritizes a collaboratively sewn musical fabric, in contrast to the traditional improvisatory method that prizes the individuality and uniqueness of the soloist.
The five pieces of «…of Late», recorded at EastSide Sound in Manhattan in December 2021, are arranged as a long suite and offer minimalist and highly resonant sonic meditations, all echo loose folk song structures. The patient and methodical development of Pavone’s compositional ideas suggests a static out-of-time space, a space for intimate reflection that reaches its emotional climax when Pavone, Niemann and Swidler add their fragile voices to the resonating strings on «Hidden Voices». The sustained pitches and clusters of Ensemble sounds generate a chain reaction of caressing and melodic, healing vibrations that have an accumulative impact on the listener long after this beautiful album is over.
Jessica Pavone (viola, v); Aimée Niemann (vio, v), Abby Swidler (vio, viola, v)