Neither/Nor Records

Natura Morta, Environ (n/n 008)



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Natura Morta is an international ensemble dedicated to exploring musical structures and relationships through acoustic improvisation. The trio’s music has been called “very intense, hypnotic, utterly strange, beautiful, horrifying and compelling” (Freejazz blog). ‘Enviorn’ is Natura Morta’s fourth release.

“Implicit in the album title is the sonic endeavor that we have undertaken in our fourth album. The three pieces of Environ trace a textural mapping of an aural landscape. Sound heard as dust, slowly and steadily accumulating then wisped into a chaotic flurry that settles and layers the ground. Beneath, a fungal network sounds an invocation to the atmosphere – to listen outward as we hear inward.” - Sean Ali 


Frantz Loriot - viola

Sean Ali - double bass

Carlo Costa - percussion

Recorded by Nathaniel Morgan at Firehouse Space in Brooklyn, NY on October 17th, 2015. Mixed and mastered by Nathaniel Morgan. All music by Natura Morta. Photographs and design by Carlo Costa.

Release date: February 17, 2017


Citizen Jazz

“Environ est de ces disques qui demandent à s’apprivoiser. On y entre pas forcément facilement si l’on souhaite s’accrocher à des arpents de mélodies ou des contreforts de rythmes. Mais si l’on se laisse emporter par l’impeccable spatialisation du son, par le climat hypnotique construit par Natura Morta, on découvrira toutes sortes de beautés infimes, brutes et parfois délicieusement irritantes. Frantz Loriot nous a souvent surpris, notamment dans la noirceur de sa collaboration avec Tobias Meier. La virulence de la lumière de Natura Morta est différente, mais pas si opposée. Il est toujours question de cette soi-disant mauvaise herbe qui pousse dans les jardins mal fréquentés. On a appris depuis longtemps que ce sont habituellement les plus belles, les plus odorantes et surtout, les plus résistantes.” (January 28, 2018)

Percorsi Musicali

“La bagarre improvvisativa tende a creare sensazioni aurali di tipo biologico e giacché i temi viaggiano negli scenari immaginativi del movimento di polveri, vento e miceli, la musica non può far altro che risentire della dinamicità espressiva per tali argomenti. I pregi di Environ si trovano nella bella pianificazione acustica delle interazioni, nella registrazione che rende grazia a suoni che altrimenti, in uno spazio qualunquistico di esibizione, non avrebbero trovato giustizia e soprattutto in una efficiente addomesticazione del carattere trasmissivo degli strumenti” (December 9, 2017)

Vital Weekly

It is incredible what a rich acoustical sound world these musicians create with their instruments without using a battery of tools and gadgets to expand their sounds. The trio surely concentrates on colouring by creating beautiful and sensitive sounds. But of course it is not just a succession of sounds they produce. These sounds serve as ingredients for very concentrated and communicative improvisations. What appears as a wilderness of sounds becomes a structured and focused work when your eyes (= ears) get used to it. ‘Ventus’ is a very dramatic and moving improvisation. ‘Mycelia’is a fantastic percussion dominated sound improvisation inspired by the visualization of the fungal underground networks. From start to finish a very fascinating and sublime work!” (November 27, 2017) 


Le complesse strutture in costante evoluzione, edificate attraverso intrigate combinazioni acustiche, costruiscono paesaggi sonori vividi e ribollenti che alternano frangenti in cui dominano attenti incastri minimali a deflagranti spirali di convulsa coralità che nel loro complesso lasciano emergere platealmente una raggiunta profonda sinergia tra i musicisti.” (October 2, 2017)


“Hier wird für mich wiederum klar verständlich, warum feine Tonträger nicht nur abhängig sind von inspirierten, zusammengespielten MusikerInnen, sondern auch von TonmeisterInnen, die sie gezielt einfangen, herausarbeiten und in detaillierter Arbeit in Position zueinander setzen. (...) Die Musiker verstehen hier, mit offenen Ohren, Abstraktionswillen, pulsierenden Ausgangs- wie Endpunkten, brillanten Spieltechniken eine Welt zu er schaffen, die in ihren Schichten durchlässig wie auch vielschichtig sich zu erkennen gibt. Die Katzen gehen an diesem Regentag von einem Fenster zum anderen und spitzen die Ohren. Empfehlung!” (August 30, 2017)

Chicago Reader

“Its three extended works bustle with all sorts of rubbing, scratching, thwacking, and thrumming, so that it's occasionally difficult to tell who's doing what: I hear the squeaks of a bow on Styrofoam, plucked strings in gnarled, crab-clawed bunches, strident patterns of sibilant grinding, abrasive arco playing flecked with harmonics, bowed cymbals, and more. That might suggest a whole lot of noise and not much else, but the trio meticulously blend their sounds and tone colors with a keen ear toward timbre, sometimes adopting more conventional musical roles to give the evolving pieces extra shape and drama.” (July 28, 2017)

Jazz Right Now

“Natura Morta’s Environ (Neither/Nor Records) released early this year, is a fusion of musical purity and avant-garde noise expression. Environ is pure in the way the band works with a limited amount of instruments to create such a wide range of sound. The album features Frantz Loriot on viola, Sean Ali on bass, and Carlo Costa on drums/percussion. There is a simplicity throughout the album; a product of three musicians and their stripped-down sound. While each instrument is discernible, Natura Morta reconstructs conventional sound and creates a kind of wild landscape, where we hear the strings and drums morphing into abstracted forms. Here, a strumming of the bass changes to a vigorous scraping and soon we begin to question whether we are still listening to the same instrument. Costa’s drumming on the album creates a similar effect.” (July 20, 2017)


“Wszyscy trzej muzycy zaangażowani w rozmaite projekty nie zapominają też o wspólnym przedsięwzięciu jakie połączyło ich muzyczne osobowości przed kilku laty. To właśnie Natura Morta, formacja której nowy album "Environ" wypełniają 3 kilkunastominutowe rozbudowane formy, będące rodzajem improwizacyjnych dźwiękowych rzeźb.” (July 17, 2017)