Fantas is the epic opening track on Caterina Barbieri’s acclaimed 2019 release Ecstatic Computation. The original Fantas laid out a magical path of patterns leading the listener on a journey into the sound itself. Fantas Variations maps out eight new potentials sprung from this initial path as constructed by a diverse mix of artists lending to a wide spectrum of new works extrapolated from the original work. For this project Barbieri invited friends and long time collaborators from a variety of musical backgrounds to create a more sustainable and inclusive landscape in terms of stylistic, geographical, gender and generational balance. The results are a diverse array of approaches and instrumentation which blur the boundaries between the acoustic and electronic.
Fantas Variations embraces a platform for mutual exchange and support between like-minded artists, where active and collective re-imagination is prioritised over the traditional model of remixes, which is often strategic, functional and more passive.
Longtime friend and collaborator Kali Malone rearranged Fantas to a slowed-down, austere and eerie version for two Organs. Evelyn Saylor created a piece for a vocal ensemble consisting of her, Lyra Pramuk, Stine Janvin and Annie Garlid, joining forces to express the choral, psychedelic and vitalistic nature of the piece. Barbieri’s former guitar professor at the Conservatory in Bologna, Walter Zanetti, composes Fantas for electric guitar, by translating every single gesture of the original electronic piece into a personal, nuanced and detailed interpretation. Bendik Giske’s reinterpretation for Saxophone and Voice captures the atmospheric essence of Fantas and its psychic meteorology. Longtime collaborator and along with Barbieri the other half of the outfit Punctum, Carlo Maria, resynthesizes Fantas for TR808 and MC202, bringing a more club-oriented dimension of the piece to life whilst unveiling the sonic continuum between rhythm and pitch through a sensitive timbral approach. Jay Mitta’s Singeli reinterpretation of Fantas transpires with pitched-up percussion and turbo-fast polyrhythmic patterns unleashing the frenetic, shifting, transformative matter within the piece to a higher plain of euphoric dance. Baseck’s variation is a rave fantasia, where the prismatic trance of the original is channeled into fierce, uncompromising hardcore, whilst Kara-Lis Coverdale’s take is a phantasmagoria for piano that gently, yet inexorably, captures the relentlessness chimerical qualities of the original, unveiling its spectral backbone.
Evelyn Saylor (feat. Lyra Pramuk, Annie Garlid & Stine Janvin) – Fantas Variation for Voices (7’38’’)
Composed by Evelyn Saylor. Performed by Evelyn Saylor, Lyra Pramuk, Stine Janvin and Annie Garlid. Recording, mix and additional production by Bridget Ferrill at Real Surreal Studio, Berlin 2021.
Bendik Giske – Fantas for Saxophone and Voice (7’31”)
Adapted and performed by Bendik Giske. Recorded, mixed, and produced by Bendik Giske in Funkhaus, Berlin 2020.
Kali Malone – Fantas for two Organs (10’21”)
Arranged for The Utopa Baroque Organ, The Sauer Organ and tuned sine waves. Recorded by Benny Nilsen at Orgelpark, Amsterdam 2020.
Walter Zanetti – Fantas for Electric Guitar (7’27”)
Recorded by Walter Zanetti, Bologna 2020.
Jay Mitta – Singeli Fantas (12’03”)
Recorded by Jay Mitta in Sisso Studios, Dar Es Salaam 2020.
Baseck – Fantas Hardcore (4’44”)
Mixed by Anthony Baldino, Los Angeles 2020.
Carlo Maria – Fantas resynthesized for 808 and 202 (4’29”)
Recorded by Carlo Maria, Milano 2020.
Kara-Lis Coverdale – Fantas Morbida (3’04”)
Performed, recorded and mixed at The Shop in Valens, Ontario by Kara-Lis Coverdale, January 2021. Engineering assistance from Robert Coverdale and Adam Feingold.