Milano's Vito Gatto cuts a striking figure behind his electronics, violin tucked under his chin, leaning over to tap pads and turn knobs. Even if his work lacked substance, the sheer originality of a solo act delivering these performances simultaneously would make Wood and Meat worth a listen.
But Gatto is no novelty act. The five tracks recorded for this debut exhibit an extraordinary talent. Gatto, who has collaborated with both Einstürzende Neubauten and Blonde Redhead, is an advanced performer of both electronic and acoustic instruments. The EP's title track feels a mile deep, with its pulsing synths and intricate percussion. "A New Day" is similarly rich.
"Raccontare un Ricordo," which boasts the disc's strongest violin performance, is bravely modern and an exhilarating listen. It's paired with more heavy-duty electronics, but the piece could be staged acoustically and not lose a bit of its emotional punch. It's such a remarkable composition that Gatto's other violin performances pale somewhat by comparison; they're not bad, but they sound a bit conventional by contrast. It's by far the EP's highlight. (Independent)