The Transcendent Function
By adopting psychologist and philosopher Carl Jung’s phrase for the title of their first duo recording, Daniel Levin and Mat Maneri have acknowledged the necessity of a balance between intuitive spontaneity (the unconscious) and pre-established conditions (the conscious) in their improvisatory format. Both of them have proven to be probing, provocative improvisers in a wide range of settings in the past, but this collaboration offers special qualities unique to the circumstances at hand.
The exposed nature of the strings colors the music – congested notes bristle or blur, bow pressure growls or sighs, and microtones add bittersweet tonalities. Often their improvisations expand and contract; interwoven melodic contours blend together until one disentangles from the other with small explosions of pizzicato or aggressive double-stops. Episodes of close-knit counterpoint allow the viola and cello to bounce off one another, jostle, and re-align contrasting details with lightning-quick responses. Two explicit points of view become a third, creative, entity.
(excerpt from the liner notes by Art Lange)
All compositions by Daniel Levin and Mat Maneri, except #6 by Daniel Levin
Recorded on February 21, 2015 by Thomas Vang at The Village, Copenhagen, Denmark / Mixed and mastered by Nick Lloyd at Firehouse 12, New Haven, Connecticut, USA
Produced by Daniel Levin and Mat Maneri / Executive production by Pedro Costa for Trem Azul
Special thanks to Pedro Gomes and Mary Wynton
Liner notes by Art Lange