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Aldo Salvent: Ancestros

Don Phipps By

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With its varied rhythms, much of Latin music possesses an erotic dance-like quality with romance never far behind. And on his album Ancestros, composer and saxophonist Aldo Salvent certainly gives credence to these generalities. The album is chock-full of music that glides through a variety of beats and patterns like a dolphin skating atop the ocean and it often has the sensual and erotic vibe of a Caribbean tropical beach scene.

Joined on this effort by pianist Jim Gasior, drummer Hilario Bell, bassist Jamie Ousley, vibraphonist and percussionist Alfredo Chacon, and percussionist Dayron Gallardo, Salvent serves up a head-nodding, foot-shuffling, samba-inducing, salsa-dancing jazz performance. Salvent's compositions run from the pensive and thoughtful "Frost and Grips" to the playful and rambunctious "Tatui." The latter gives off a neon vibe, with twirling colors of pinks, blues and greens backdropped by an orange streaked beach sunset.

For rhythmic variety, Salvent throws in a bit of calypso ("Limon") and uses rubato to great effect on "Cimarron" to highlight the theme. "Cimarron" also gives Chacon a chance to demonstrate his outstanding vibraphone work, which interweaves with Salvent's blissful sax lines.

Gasior gets into the action on several numbers. He uses off-beat chords on "Frost and Grips," issues hard, confident attacks on "Limon" and has no problem with plunks and rolls, as evidenced by "Habana" and "Conga." Best of all, on many numbers he demonstrates an ability to doodle, splash, run and dawdle across the keys with precision. Bassist Ousley offers a warm solo on "Habana," a highlight of the number. His solo also sets the mood on the sensuous "Camina Con Tumbao," a piece which feels like a wind-tossed, top-down drive on an ocean road at sunset.

In truth, however, the music belongs to Salvent, whose bubbling effervescent sax playing fills the room with vivacious energy. Whether it's his birdlike refrains on "Habana," his sexy solos on "Frost and Grips," "Ancestros" and "La Giganta," or his running playfulness on "Tatui," Salvent proves he can carry the music—whether majestic, sensual, romantic, or joyful.

Like a Caribbean sailboat unfurled, gliding effortlessly across the ocean, the music of Aldo Salvent on Ancestros has a happy, ecstatic feel.

Track Listing: Frost and Grips; Limón; Cimarrón; Habana; Ancestros; Conga; La Giganta; Camina Con Tumbao; Tatuí; Canto Necio.

Personnel: Aldo Salvent: composer, saxophone; Jim Gasior: piano; Hilario Bell: drums; Jamie Ousley: bass; Dayron Gallardo: percussion; Alfredo Chacon: vibes, percussion.

Title: Ancestros | Year Released: 2019 | Record Label: Self Produced

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