Photo credit: Jim C Nedd
“A pattern creates a certain state of consciousness. Once it is created, the pattern stands as an object exactly like the sound waves which generate it. We are at the same time inside and outside of the object. While being it, we observe it. Over time we become familiar with the inner structure of the pattern. We decode its gravitational centres, where our psycho-motor attention is attracted, where everything seems to be drawn. When a change in the pattern occurs it causes a perturbation of the previously established field of forces. This causes consciousness to fracture, potentially unfolding layers of perceptions we weren't aware of or simply suggesting that we access only a fraction of our psychic potential. The layered nature of consciousness and the relativity of perception are some of the biggest secrets we can experience through sound.” Italian composer Caterina Barbieri explores the psycho-physical effects of repetition and pattern-based operations in music, by investigating the polyphonic and polyrhythmic potential of sequencers to draw severe, complex geometries in time and space. Approaching music practice as an integrative cognitive feedback between humans and technology lies at the core of her current sonic research, which focuses on the creative use of computation and complex sequencing techniques to trigger temporal and spatial hallucinations.
Approaching music practice as an integrative cognitive feedback between humans and technology lies at the core of her current sonic research, which focuses on the creative use of computation and complex sequencing techniques to trigger temporal and spatial hallucinations, often exploring states of trance and emotional focus. Pitchfork has described her music as “a mind-altering journey” and “a dreammachine for the ears”.
Her first release Vertical, composed for Buchla 200 and vocals, was produced between Elektronmusikstudion and the Royal College of Music in Stockholm and released via Important Records’ Cassauna offshoot (2014). Since then, her work has been extensively presented in festivals and venues across the world such as Atonal and Berliner Festspiele, Mutek, Unsound, Sonar, Primavera Sound, Dekmantel, Barbican Centre, Philharmonie de Paris, Berghain, Biennale di Venezia.
Her full-length debut album Patterns of Consciousness (Important Records, 2017) has been named as one of the best releases of the year and the decade. Her 2019 release on Editions Mego, Ecstatic Computation, has been critically acclaimed and is record of the year on Bleep. Caterina has collaborated with a variety of artists including Kali Malone (as Upper Glossa), Carlo Maria (as Punctum), Drew McDowall, Bendik Giske and Lyra Pramuk, as well as the visual artist Ruben Spini, who created the visuals for the A/V performance Time-blind.
She has recently signed her first movie soundtrack for Pascual Sisto’s “John and the Hole”, that was selected at Cannes 2020 and Sundance 2021, as well as scored fashion shows by Fendi, Gucci, Calvin Klein and Off-White.
She’s also the founder of the independent label platform light-years.
Italian musician and composer, Caterina Barbieri
light-years, Editions Mego
Barbieri holds a Master degree in classical guitar and a Bachelor's degree in electroacoustic composition from the Conservatory of Bologna, Italy, alongside a Bachelor's degree from the Faculty of Humanities and Philosophy of Bologna with a thesis in Ethnomusicology about Hindustani music and minimalism.