Taranta Container - Nidi d'Arac
Edizioni V2 Music
Italian folklore tells how the bite of the wolf spider causes the victim to whip into a poison-induced, frenetic dance like a “gay tarantella”. Yep, that’s amore! The tambourine and accordion-driven tarantella, tarante and Taranto, a province and port city in southern Italy (where the arch meets the heel of the Italian boot) all seem to share the same root word, and each plays a part in a vibrant expression of traditional culture. For 12 years, Nidi d’Arac have been reviving and updating this tradition with elements of rock, dub and electronica, the best of which has been reworked, remixed and containerized for shipping to global markets. The package called Taranta Container features a ghostly freighter plying unknown waters with its cargo of cultural significance safe in its hold. I have to say, researching the band on the world-wide web has been a challenge and an adventure. Beside the linguistic links between the spider-bite folk tale and the arachnid association between all the ‘taranta’ related words (like tarantola which is Italian for tarantula) there are more questions raised by the band’s name itself. Run Nidi d’Arac through the Google translator and you’ll get the Nursery of Arac or Arak. Arak is a Middle-Eastern liqueur made from coconut flowers, which hardly seems like something you want in a nursery. Of course, arac may refer to arachnid which brings us back to our eight-legged friends. No wonder tambourine master and ethnomusicologist Alessandro Coppola shed his punk leanings over a decade ago to delve further into the music of his heritage. Though the spirit of Southern Italy resounds in their music, Nidi d’Arac has relocated to Rome to pick up even more of the metropolitan vibe. "Consciousness," Coppola says, "is the base for all music. You have to know the roots, before you can mix cultures. I have also been interested in the French sociologist Georges Lapassade, who noted the connections between the tarantella and trance music, which we can connect to raves." Which handily brings us to some of the collaborators on Taranta Container, most notably Italian sound designer and beat scientist Gaudi who creates a trance-induced vision alongside Coppola called Ci Fice Lu Mundu. Frenchman, DJ Click remixes Iopcharia and UK/Danish DJ duo Streamer Pilot turn in Quante Tarante? a pretty piece of dancefloor pop. There’s plenty of interest packed inside Taranta Container.