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Ambient electronic artist Alessandro Cortini, of Nine Inch Nails fame, returns to Vancouver after nearly a decade

The Chan Centre for the Performing Arts at the University of British Columbia announced today that Alessandro Cortini, a longstanding member of Nine Inch Nails, will give a performance at the Telus Studio Theatre on Sunday, October 1 at 7PM as part of the Chan Centre EXP series, co-presented with Vancouver New Music.

“From his legendary time as one of the creative forces behind Nine Inch Nails, through his solo work as an electronic composer and instrument designer, Alessandro Cortini is a master of sonic sculpture and modular synthesis. We’re thrilled to present his first performance in Vancouver in almost a decade, for what is sure to be a mesmerizing, magical, and haunting show.” 

Jarrett Martineau, curator-in-residence of the Chan Centre

The Italian musician, composer, producer, and instrument builder is one of the foremost figures of contemporary electronic music. For the past decade, Cortini has been steadily releasing his own heady music, quietly carving a name for himself in the ambient sphere. Known for his ability to balance dark ambience with smoky, pulsing rhythms, Cortini has been producing his best work since he created his own synth. Called “Strega”, the semi-modular synth and effects box has opened up new sonic possibilities.

Cortini’s latest album SCURO CHIARO employs the custom synth, taking his sound to new heights. A cinematic, brooding, and awe-inspiring album, Cortini “stalks his twisting signal paths with confidence and vitality, eager to turn each corner, each knob, and see where it might lead” resulting in work that “consistently manages to thrill and surprise.” (Pitchfork)

Though Cortini may be most recognizable from his time in Nine Inch Nails, it is his electronic music that sets him apart. An artist who lives on the shadowy edges of fame, his last performance in Vancouver was in 2015.

Cortini will also give a workshop and lead a discussion on interface and tactile feedback in music making and writing with practical examples based on the “Strega”. This ancillary event will be held on Monday, October 2 at The Post @ 750. This workshop is free for UBC students and the wider Vancouver community. Registration is required and will open at a later date with further details to come.

Thu Jul 20, 2023