Amazon.com Widgets

Lars Danielsson: Liberetto (2012)

By Published: | 12,394 views
Lars Danielsson: Liberetto How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

With Tarantella (ACT, 2009)—his last studio recording excluding the career-spanning Signature Edition 3 (ACT, 2010) compilation— Lars Danielsson raised the bar on a string of recordings demonstrating increased evolution on all fronts. If Liberetto doesn't exhibit the same degree of incremental stylistic growth that Tarantella did over previous albums including Pasodoble (ACT, 2007) and Mélange Bleu (ACT, 2007), it does represent its own milestone, one where Danielsson's astute choice of players becomes as important as the music they play.

Liberetto expands on Tarantella's masterful mix of elegant lyricism, unerring groove and Euro-centric classicism. While the configuration of his group is the same—a piano/guitar/bass/drums quartet occasionally augmented with trumpet—Danielsson opts for an almost entirely new ensemble, with only John Parricelli returning, and it's a great choice. The British guitarist—largely a session player who's also rubbed shoulders with artists including trumpeter Kenny Wheeler
Kenny Wheeler
Kenny Wheeler
1930 - 2014
trumpet
and saxophonist Andy Sheppard
Andy Sheppard
Andy Sheppard
b.1957
saxophone
—plays largely a supportive role, primarily on nylon-stringed guitar, and delivers a brief but impressive solo on Danielsson's "Driven to Daylight," a track propelled forward by the bassist's robust tone and percussive approach.

Parricelli is essential to Danielsson's "Orange Market," which begins gently—its winding melody doubled by the guitarist and Armenian pianist Tigran Hamasyan (here going by his first name only), replacing Tarantella's Leszek Możdżer—but gradually picks up steam as a theme-driven bass solo leads to Tigran pushing into territory familiar for fans of pianist Esbjorn Svensson
Esbjorn Svensson
Esbjorn Svensson
1964 - 2008
piano
's e.s.t. trio. There's an even more direct connection, with e.s.t.'s Magnus Ostrom
Magnus Ostrom
Magnus Ostrom
b.1965
drums
assuming the drum chair after Tarantella's Eric Harland
Eric Harland
Eric Harland
b.1976
drums
. Not that Tigran plays anything like the late Swedish pianist—nor does Danielsson sound anything like e.s.t.'s Dan Berglund
Dan Berglund
Dan Berglund
b.1963
bass, acoustic
. But as the song builds to Liberetto's most powerful peak, the trio of Tigran, Danielsson and Öström works a repetitive series of changes with the same kind of relentless drive and exhilarating climactic build.

Aside from four pieces written/co-written/arranged by Tigran, the bulk of Liberetto comes from Danielsson's pen, the pianist's opening "Yerevan" suggesting an electro-acoustic confluence not heard since Mélange Bleu, featuring trumpeter Arve Henriksen
Arve Henriksen
Arve Henriksen
b.1968
trumpet
's harmonized trumpet and Parricelli's in-the-weeds guitar swells. Still, what most distinguishes Liberetto's largely acoustic set from recent predecessors is its inherent intensity, even in its quietest moments. While the title track and, in particular, the sing-song approach to "Ahdes Theme" remain as gentle and painfully beautiful as some of the bassist's best writing, the interaction and commitment amongst this particular group of musicians is deeper, more immediate and, in some cases, more flat-out visceral than anything that's come before.

Danielsson's had some great groups in the past, but with his newfound musical soul mate Tigran—the two meeting a scant week or two before the recording—this one demands the opportunity to discover where longevity might lead. An exceptional and compelling debut for Danielsson's new lineup, what Liberetto delivers is ultimately but a promise of greater things to come—hopefully a beginning, and not an ending.

Track Listing: Yerevan; Liberetto; Day One; Orange Market; Hymnen; Svensk Låt; Hov arek sarer djan; Party on the Planet; Tystnaden; Ahdes Theme; Driven to Daylight; Blå Ängar.

Personnel: Lars Danielsson: bass, cello, Wurlitzer piano (8); Tigran: piano, vocals (7); John Parricelli: guitar; Arve Henriken: trumpet; Magnus Öström: drums, percussion.

Record Label: ACT Music

Style: Modern Jazz


comments powered by Disqus
Support All About Jazz Through Amazon

Weekly Giveaways

Carmen Lundy

Carmen Lundy

About | Enter

Wadada Leo Smith

Wadada Leo Smith

About | Enter

Mort Weiss

Mort Weiss

About | Enter

Rotem Sivan

Rotem Sivan

About | Enter

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW

Enter it twice.
To the weekly jazz events calendar

Enter the numbers in the graphic
Enter the code in this picture

Log in

One moment, you will be redirected shortly.