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På skive


«April 25th»

April 25th is a thought-provoking compilation of sound art pieces that celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Portuguese Carnation Revolution – Revolução dos Cravos – in April 25th, 1974 when a dreadful, authoritarian regime collapsed in agony 48 years of a lugubrious dictatorship based on repression of individual and social freedom, censorship, and colonialism. Portuguese poet and writer Sophia Mello Breyner Andresen wrote on that day: This is the dawn I waited for / The new day clean and whole / When we emerge from night and silence / To freely inhabit the substance of time.

The compilation begins with Heitor Alvelos’s “Expectant” comprised of low-fidelity sourced from AM radio broadcasts, recorded by Francisco Alvelos on the morning of April 25, 1974, that convey a sense of irredeemable distance, freaking appropriate today, given the global state of affairs. Joana Guerra’s «Pássaros da aurora» (dawn birds) for cello and voice is a moving and mournful tribute to the countless individuals and resistance movements who bravely opposed the Portuguese dictatorship. Barbara de Dominicis and Carlos Santos’ seductive «Morning happened slowly» is an homage to resistance to the liberation of Palestine.

Fernando Fadigas’ «Revolution_48» employs a magnetic tape continuum loop that runs through an installation space presenting his sense of deteriorating nature. Yannick Dauby’s «Taipei, Taiwan, 2020» relates to the day when Tsai Ing-Wen (Democratic Progressive Party) was elected as the first female President of Taiwan. Then happy crowds gathered in the evening. A group of people from Hong Kong started to congratulate and thank Taiwan, then soon some Taiwanese people cheered them. Paulo Raposo’s «Escuto» examines the chaotic military radio transmissions that took place and were recorded on the night of the Portuguese revolution in April of 1974.

Ajítẹnà Marco Scarassatti’s enigmatic «And that night I heard a steady light in the middle of the water» processes his invented instrument, Tromp Kirk Roland, with personal archived recordings to stress that «when there is the 25th of April, in the nights that precede, the freedom always rests and dreams». Carlos Santos’ mysterious and atmospheric «Freely inhabits the substance of time» uses a modular feedback system and field recordings from the 2011 25th April commemorations to suggest an allegorical sense of ascension, from the dark times of the dictatorship into the light and freedom of democracy, somehow corresponding with Andresen’s poem. Philippe Petit’s unsettling «Getting darker» hopes that «music may speak louder than words».

Murmer’s drone «Freenholm factory: weekday ambiance» explores the sonic ambiance of the defunct Kreenholm factory complex In Estonia, once one of the biggest industrial sites in all of Estonia, still full of ghosts and memories. Quatroconnection’s «S.E.M.P.R.E.» is Carla Santana’s uplifting hommage to the 25th April 1974. «A daughter of freedom, here to remember to where we shall never return. The way is forward. Sempre».

This arresting compilation declares that under the current threat of rising neo-fascism, some days don’t need a name, but others need to have a name, a carnation, so they are not forgotten or can be found again.

Eyal Hareuveni