Awakening of a City

Luigi Russolo

  • Year of composition: 1914
  • Duration: 7:03


ISRC CAA4J2010122

  • 44,1 kHz, 16 bits

“Every manifestation of life is accompanied by noise. Noise is therefore familiar to our ears and has the power to remind us immediately of life itself. Musical sound, a thing extraneous to life and independent of it… has become to our ears what a too familiar face is to our eyes.” — Luigi Russolo

Luigi Russolo and his assistant Ugo Piatti built one of the first mechanical orchestras, the “intonarumori” (noise machines), 27 different types of machines, each producing a unique sound assigned to several “families” of instruments, including “howlers,” “exploders,” “crumplers,” “hissers,” and “scrapers.” In the 1920s, Russolo performed numerous concerts with these outrageous instruments emitting their startling sounds. Risveglio di una città /Awakening of a City suggests a larger purpose, its arsenal of noises, evoking the sounds of urban sirens and factory whistles, is a call to awakening our ears to the dawning of a new music of noise.