171

Gianluca Renzi: Don't Stop Your Mind

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count
Gianluca Renzi: Don't Stop Your Mind By Angelo Leonardi | Translation by Christine Recchia

At just thirty, he's already had an extensive history of formative experiences: recordings with Stefano Battaglia, Riccardo Fassi and Giampaolo Ascolese; and collaborations with Pieranunzi, Melillo, Ambrosetti and Watson. Bassist Gianluca Renzi delivers his second disc as a solo artist with a renewed lineup (pianist Pietro Lusso and trombonist Raffaele Carotenuto are confirmed participants), animated by fresh, expressive articulation. Renzi's main influences are the greats of modern jazz who made the biggest innovations to the language of hard bop in the early '70s—artists like Charles Mingus, Wayne Shorter, Andrew Hill, Herbie Hancock and Jackie McLean.

It's no accident, then, that the bassist's music, which affirms his gifts as composer and arranger, is profoundly marked by African-American aesthetics. Though they tend to favor rhythm, the compositions alternate quick interchanges and extended pauses, with arrangements that play ably with instrumental colors and mixtures in an orchestral rationale.

Along with frequent appearances by and openings to the soloists, the group dynamics are marked by skillful performance, as are the harmonic and metric structures, which distinguish this work from the usual neo-bop productions.

On more than one occasion, the tightness of the group recalls Dave Holland's band; Renzi's young partners excel both as a group and as soloists. The front line is comprised of Daniele Tittarelli (contralto sax), Jerry Popolo (tenor sax) and Raffaele Carotenuto. Lussu's exemplary piano and keyboards, Renzi's intensely expressive bass, and Roberto Desiderio's distinctive drums provide the intriguing and vibrant support they're known for.

To conclude with the repertory, what is noteworthy is the sincere inclination towards blues ("In My Soul ) and funk (Herbie Hancock's "One Finger Snap )—but above all, the imagination displayed in finding new approaches. That can be done by creatively referring back to the past; in "Five Points If No Helmet, the expressive urgency of free improv merges with a bop-style orchestration reminiscent of the late '40s. "Don't Stop Your Mind is a sophisticated re-reading of both cultured and popular aspects of the African-American tradition.

A complex and engaging disc that affirms Gianluca Renzi's gifts and places him among the most interesting figures of the up-and-coming generation.


Track Listing: Should Be A Blues; Don't Stop Your Mind; In My Soul; One Finger Snap; My Dear Hill (New Version); A Day Out Of This Time; Five Points If No Helmet.

Personnel: Daniele Tittarelli: alto and soprano saxophone; Jerry Popolo: sax tenor and soprano saxophone; Raffaele Carotenuto: trombone; Pietro Lussu: piano, keyboards; Roberto Desiderio: drums.

Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: Wide Sound | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read Backlog CD/LP/Track Review Backlog
by Mark F. Turner
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Over the Rainbow CD/LP/Track Review Over the Rainbow
by Paul Rauch
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Before The Silence CD/LP/Track Review Before The Silence
by John Sharpe
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Process And Reality CD/LP/Track Review Process And Reality
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1 CD/LP/Track Review Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 24, 2017
Read The Picasso Zone CD/LP/Track Review The Picasso Zone
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: February 23, 2017
Read "The Volume Surrounding the Task" CD/LP/Track Review The Volume Surrounding the Task
by John Eyles
Published: July 6, 2016
Read "Forest Grove" CD/LP/Track Review Forest Grove
by Dave Wayne
Published: March 26, 2016
Read "Reflections Of A Voice" CD/LP/Track Review Reflections Of A Voice
by Chris Mosey
Published: January 14, 2017
Read "Mo' Puddin'" CD/LP/Track Review Mo' Puddin'
by Edward Blanco
Published: May 24, 2016
Read "Very Early" CD/LP/Track Review Very Early
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 23, 2016
Read "Elevenses" CD/LP/Track Review Elevenses
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 5, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!