Those whose musical tastes run the spectrum from jazz to classical will find composer/saxophonist Frank Macchia's Emotions
to be a beautiful concept album fronting the voice of the tenor in a setting of classically orchestral music. Inspired by saxophonist Stan Getz's classic Focus
(Verve, 1961), Macchia joins the Prague Orchestra conducted by Adam Klemens for a unique version of jazz symphony.
Macchia's compositions and arrangements employ the heavy string section of The Prague Orchestra, providing a lush symphonic quality that compliments the saxophonist's soft tenor phrasings throughout. He is also featured on bass flute, ethnic winds and synthesizers.
An inventive composer, Macchia's main theme is a four-movement suite"EmotionsSuite for Saxophone & Strings that portrays the emotions of anger, hope, sorrow and joy, fusing his saxophone voice with the lush background of the strings.
Beginning with the incredibly rich orchestrations of "Black Is The Color Of My True Love's Hair, the music flows gently with obvious shades of the Getz influence. Tracy London provides vocals while the leader plays bass flute and synthesizers on the wordless "Prayer For Earth.
Hide and Seek contains, perhaps, Macchia's best sax solos on a beautiful score that seems hauntingly familiar to some motion picture soundtracks. The last two tracks feature a blend of blues and tarantella with "Bluesentella, and more of the Getz style of play on the closer, "Elegy.
Tthis is music for those who can appreciate classical as well as jazz. Not a typical big band album, Emotions reaches into your soul, touches your feelings and challenges the depth of one's emotions. It's a rich and graceful album of soft melodies with sharp edges provided by the saxophone of Frank Macchia.
Personnel: Frank Macchia: composer, tenor saxophone, bass flute, synthesizer; The Prague Orchestra: Adam Klemens: conductor; Tracy London: vocals; Aaron Smith: tambourine, percussion; orchestra personnel unlisted.