Umbria Jazz Winter #19, Days 1-2: December 28-29, 2011
Bosso and Girotto seemed to twirl in an animated dialogue between close friends throughout the concert. Basso's ability to be smooth without ever approaching an overly mellifluous zone, while Girotto's metallic, note-filled sound clouds created the a cappella feeling of two voices perfectly intertwined, thanks to their uncanny ability to complement each other.
Similarly, the glorious exchanges between Marcozzi and Tucci on "Zoogami" gave the impression of a tarantula dancea fast, up-tempo traditional blend of the music of Southern Italy with a Latin tinge.
Gianluca Petrella/Giovanni Guidi Duo
Continuing their ongoing collaboration with trumpeter Enrico Rava, pianist Giovanni Guidi and trombonist Gianluca Petrella gave shape to a memorable duo concert, dominated by the bravery of extreme experimentalism. Guidi's trademark is the poetics of understatementa whisper which, in its most lyrical moments, seemed to create an aura of Philip Glass's obsessive compositions within his improvisations. Petrella's musical vocabulary, on the other hand, was more abstract and futuristic; his trombone roared and rattled, whistled and cheered.
The duo's version of "Over the Rainbow" surprised even the most skilled listener with its unpredictable rhythmic changes, courageous muted sighs and a refined mellowness that seemed the extracted essence of the original melody. A subtly distilled emotional complexity was the primary scope of the duo's sonic idiom.
At one point, Petrella started playing while wandering around the museum, filling his peripatetic experiment with the funny, chat-like, grumble of his notes on trombone. His sparkly, show-off promenade was backed by Guidi's bluesy staccato, which brought the trombonist's humor back to a more secretively warm idiom.
A Love SupremeTrane Tribute
Saxophonist Pietro Tonolo, double bassist Marc Abrams and drummer Mauro Beggio delivered a multimedia tribute to John Coltrane's classic A Love Supreme (Impulse!, 1965)with visual effects by Massimo Achilliinvading the senses with extreme force. The intertwining of projected images and live music was both powerful and bewitching.
The concert was introduced by the sensitive words of author Ashley Kahn, who shared some of his specialized research on Coltrane's masterpiece. In the hall of Sala del Carmine, the ethereal works of art by Massimo Chioccia and Olga Tsarkova, dedicated to Coltrane, surrounded the audience with essential blue shades.
The minimalist and rarefied arrangements of Coltrane's masterpieceintroduced and ended by Tonolo on mbira (thumb piano)were coupled, throughout the set, by a series of graphic projections, mixing Coltrane's profile with sketches and documentary images of the urban settings which first witnessed his musical experimentations. If the emotional montage of these sequences reminded of Germaine Dulac, the polished music here carried the core of Coltrane's soul into a fascinating tribute.
Enzo Pietropaoli "Yatra" Quartet
Enzo Pietropaoli, who recently won the 2011 Musica Jazz critics' poll as Best Italian Double Bass Player of the Year, presented his Yatra quartet project, with trumpeter Fulvio Sigurtà, pianist Julian Mazzariello and drummer Alessandro Paternesi.
Following the path traced by Yatra (Jando, 2011)which means "travel" in Hindustanithe set developed around wide, atmospheric sonorities suggesting the freedom of open Mediterranean landscapes. The upbeat, percussive bass and syncopated, fast-tempo piano in "Il mare di fronte," with Sigurtà's crystalline trumpet filling the room, seemed to follow the adventurous travels of Wim Wenders' main character in his 2010 film, Until the End of the World. "Onda Minore," on the other hand, developed around a mixture of melancholia and joy, with Paternesi's delicate finger tapping on his snare drum surrounding a dream-like melody developed around nine minor chords. Together with Pietropaoli's touching compositions, an almost whispered version of Amie Mann's "Wise Up" was remarkable, closing the set with tenderness and everlasting charm.
The Dominican pianist's solo concert at Teatro Mancinelli opened the Latin Jazz section of the festival with a very diverse repertoire, selected to highlight the scope of Camilo's technical skills. Similarly, the day after, in his duo with Danilo Rea, "Besame Mucho" was followed by "Route 66" and preceded by Miles Davis' "Solar."