Trial Of The Bow
(Copyright © 1999 Piero Scaruffi | Legal restrictions - Termini d'uso )

Rite Of Passage , 6.5/10

Formed in 1993 in Melbourne (Australia) by Renato Gallina (percussion/vocals) and Matthew Skarajew (stringed instruments), Trial Of The Bow takes inspiration from Dead Can Dance to compose exotic/gothic/medieval music scored for an orchestra of unusual instruments. The exquisite vignettes of the EP Ornamentation (Release, 1995) mainly showcased the skills of the duo as arrangers: The Two Sacred Tapestries of Persia, Inverloch, From the Mountains of Tangier , Ornamentation.

But Rite Of Passage (Release, 1997) is already a mature work, the result of a careful process of contrast and superimposition. The main sources of inspiration are medieval music (The Court Of The Servant, Alizee, As Night Falls, Ceilidh for the Sallow Ground) and bansuri flute-tinged classical Indian music (Serpent, Muezzin), but the duo excels at the most evocative pieces (Ubar), that project vivid images of past life, almost like a gallery of photographs. The multifaceted instrumentation (oud, ghaita, Tibetan singing bowl, tabla, saz, hammered dulcimer) is used like a palette of colors and applied to enhance the nuances of each scene. And occasionally (The Eyre of Awakening) it reinvents avantgarde techniques.

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