The black and white cover photos of Dominick Farinacci's Dawn of Goodbye evokes the early 1960s, but the trumpeter is not just striking a pose. He may only be 28, but the tone of his trumpet is that of a multi-era jazz soul. Farinacci's concept for this collection, sans lyrics, is an instrumental narrative collection of standards that tell bittersweet love stories, and it displays an understated theatricalityfrom show-stopping to back alley film noir.
Farinacci's disarming version of De Paul/Raye's "You Don't Know What Love Is," played with economy and passion, encapsulates many of the trumpeter's qualities. He blows blue fire on his otherwise blistering tempo of Porter's "It's Alright With Me," with fine balance by bassist Yasushi Nakamura. Throughout the recording, Nakamura and drummer Carmen Intorre's display sinuous dynamic.
Moody atmospherics build with another Porter classic "I Concentrate on You," contoured into a '60s basso-lounge affair, featuring the lush guitar of Guilherme Monteiro. You can almost see the crowded smoke-filled bar, as the lovers gaze and steal a dance.
Farinacci composition "Dom's Blues" shows strong narrative skill, but has a canned studio quality that seems like an insert for this collection. In contrast, his "Midnight Embrace" is a sultry tango with trumpet and flugelhorn snaking in and out of a taut, big-band scaled arrangementanother fine example of Farinacci's theme of telling a musical story with a beginning, middle and fantastic end.
Ann Ronell's jazz warhorse, "Willow Weep For Me," is a strident, cloying blues, although there's the feeling the musicians would take this to the river in a live performance. In contrast, a bluesy rendition "Lover Man" is more organic, with intriguing undercurrents by pianist Dan Kaufman. The pianist's own song "Windshadow" essays an airy piano solos, with Farinacci showing how subtle a muted horn can be.
The end track of the title song reaches for resolution and even a cathartic resolve à la Terence Blanchard, but the two "at ease" tag-on tunes at the end are the real finaleMonaco/McCarthy's "You Made Me Love You" drops in on a sinuous duo with Nakamura and Farinacci, followed by and a wily reading of Bobby Timmons' "Moanin"
Even with a few flatter musical detours, Dawn of Goodbye is one of most cohesive and well-recorded jazz instrumental recordings of the year, capturing stellar studio sessions by Farinacci and his group.
You Don't Know What Love Is; It's Alright With Me; I Concentrate On You; Dom's Blues; Midnight Embrace; Lover Man; Willow Weep For Me; Windshadow; Dawn Of Goodbye.
Dominick Farinacci: trumpet, flugelhorn; Dan Kaufman: piano (1-3, 5, 6, 8, 9); Yasushi Nakamura: bass (1-3, 5, 6, 8, 9); Carmen Intorre: drums (1-4, 6-9); Keita Ogawa: percussion (1, 2, 5, 8, 9); Jonathan Batiste: piano (4, 7); Ben Williams: bass (4, 7); Guilherme Monteiro: acoustic guitar (3).
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