Dutch trumpeter Eric Vloeimans isn't afraid to try different things. In fact, he seems to relish the opportunity to work in a variety of settings. Vloeimans tangled with pianist John Taylor
, bassist Marc Johnson
, and drummer Joey Baron
on Bitches and Fairy Tales
(Challenge Records, 1999); he went the electric route with a quartet known as Gatecrash; he recorded with The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra on Evensong
(Challenge Classics, 2013); and he pared things down, conversing openly with pianist Florian Weber
on the duo-licious Live At The Concertgebouw
(Challenge Jazz, 2011). Despite the disparate nature of those projects, Vloeimans has been able to establish a musical personality that's readily identifiable in nearly any context. He's a true original who continues to push boundaries, creating and exploring different worlds through his work.
With Oliver's Cinema, Vloeimans finds himself in a chamber-ish space, working intimate, elegant, and refined music into shape with cellist Jorg Brinkmann
and accordionist Tuur Florizoone
. Together, these three float, fly, dance, soothe, and seduce. They build music around a grounding and surprisingly calming cello ostinato in 17/8 ("Aladdin"), create bouyant and cheery diversions for the mind ("Fellini's Waltz"), work in some lighthearted strains ("L'Amour Des Moules"), and create pictures built around a complex mixture of colors ("Papillon"). And while each number exists in a separate place, all of the music shares certain qualities, chiefly an appreciation for consonance and disdain for musical clutter; nobody's making edgy music or trying to overplay on this one.
All three musicians are virtuosos, capable of dazzling at a moment's notice, but this album has little to do with chops and everything to do with mood. Yes, there are those moments when Brinkmann's cello astounds ("Seggiano's Eve"), Florizoone goes for a quick flight, or Vloeimans bounds around, but those are byproducts of the conversations and going-ons, not the goal. This music is about charm, not might.
The name of the group/record is an anagrammatic rewrite of Vloeimans' own name, but it's also a fitting moniker for this threesome. There's a cinematic sweep to their original music, some of which references famous films in title and tone ("Bambi"), and they take on a few film score classics, replacing the lush qualities of "Cinema Paradiso" with a drowsier sensibility and capturing the heightened sense of drama and uncertainty in "Rosemary's Baby." Is it "Chamber Jazz?" "Music For Real And Imaginary Films?" "Dutch Jazz?" Or is it something else entirely? That's for the marketing forces to decide. On the aural end, it should simply be noted that Eric Vloeimans' Oliver's Cinema creates beautiful and heartfelt music that touches the soul.
Aladdin; Prince Henri; Cinema Paradiso; Les Vapes; L'Amour Des Moules; Imagining;
Seggiano's Eve; Fellini's Waltz; Slow Motion; Rosemary's Baby; Papillon; Slow Tango;
Bambi; Rosa Turbinata.
Eric Vloeimans: trumpet; Tuur Florizoone: accordion; Jorg Brinkmann: cello.