Gianmarco Liguori: Stolen Paintings (2007)

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Gianmarco Liguori: Stolen Paintings
Each performer on this wonderful album is credited with the arrangements of individual tracks, all under the direction of guitarist Gianmarco Liguori. Based out of New Zealand, the musicians fuse numerous genres into a sequence of cohesive musical statements that could easily translate into a film score. Essentially, that's the way the music progresses throughout, sans any extreme use of synths or overuse of studio processing trickery.

Word has it that Gianmarco Liguori is a relatively popular rock/space-rock guitarist down under in New Zealand. Yet his broad vernacular shines glitteringly throughout this irrefutably appealing studio session. Here, his sextet rather delicately homogenizes world music, contemporary jazz, folk and house-grooves into segments that spark notions of romance and optimism.

On the opening title piece, a dreamy analog synth passage rests atop a pulsating waltz vibe. With "Trap Door, the band executes a peppery world-beat and percussion-heavy motif, warmly shaded by Kim Patterson's muted trumpet lines. In addition, these works are comprised of multi-layered pastiches of sound, also featuring rock patterns morphed with ambient effects, warm flute patterns and bustling rhythmic frameworks. They even skirt the fringes of acid-jazz to complement movements exercised upon spunky and impacting pulses, where the leader ups the ante in spots with gritty crunch chords.

The artists make their statements in a persuasive and shrewdly designed manner. On a side-note, Stolen Paintings would serve as an excellent tool for testing, when engaging in the try and buy process of purchasing high-end audio components. Sure enough, this album promotes a distinct sense of listening ease, spiced with sparkling dynamics and a focused group-centric methodology that makes it all rather irresistible.

Track Listing: Intro: Stolen Paintings; Trap Door; Alpine Bossa; The Wardrobe; Insect Beat; Penta; Kattorna; Jobims Cigar; Dont Open The Window; Mouth In The Desert.

Personnel: Gianmarco Liguori: 6 and 12 string guitars, additional bass and synthesizer; Kim Patterson: drums, trumpet, percussion; Miguel Fuentes: bata drum, congas, bongos, Ilama toes, bells; Murray McNabb: piano, synthesizer, Hammond organ; Andy Atwell: electric and double-bass; Brian Smith: tenor saxophone, flute.

Record Label: Sarang Bang Records

Style: Fringes of Jazz

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