Make a difference: Support jazz online

Support All About Jazz Your friends at All About Jazz are looking for readers to help back our website upgrade project. Of critical importance, this project will result in a vastly improved design across all devices and will make future All About Jazz projects much easier to implement. Click here to learn more about this project including donation rewards.

189

Pete Malinverni: Invisible Cities

David A. Orthmann By

Sign in to view read count
Pete Malinverni's Invisible Cities:, inspired by the imaginative flights of Italo Calvino's novel of the same name, exists on its own terms and doesn't readily fit into any established jazz style or sensibility. The pianist effectively juxtaposes six of his compositions and four well-known, urban-themed songs. His ballad-oriented tunes, "New Orleans—Cities & Desire," "Salem—Hester Prynne," and "A City Called Heaven," are clothed in lovely, expressive melodies, the kind that beg for equally inspired lyrics. Beautifully interpreted by Tim Hagans's trumpet, "Venice—Cities & Memory" evokes images of a somewhat formal dance with erotic undertones. Amidst the quizzical, intermittent melody played by the horns on the frantic "Cities & Time," Malinverni pokes and prods the keyboard so as to mock the order imposed by the bass and drums. The loquacious "Istanbul" offers a straight-ahead swing bridge in between bracing twelve bar Latin sections.

The presence of three eloquent, individualistic soloists—Malinverni, Hagans, and tenor saxophonist Rich Perry—makes it easy to overlook the subtle, unobtrusive contributions of bassist Ugonna Okegwo and drummer Tom Melito. Throughout an endlessly stimulating Latin groove that underscores "I Love Paris," they keep a two bar vamp cooking by simply staying put and not moving it in any other direction. Repeating one measure in five-four followed by another in three-four on "Cities & Time," Okegwo and Melito offer the impression of rapidly running in place. The leader's "Chicago" solo swings hard and true in part because of their stalwart support.

Malinverni's "I Love Paris" improvisation integrates pointed, rhythmically charged phrases and brief pauses. Beautiful and unsentimental, Malinverni purposefully strides through Okewgo and Melito's support throughout "Salem—Hester Prynne." Ostensibly resisting any connection to the bass and drums, the pianist's controlled chaos on "Cities & Time" includes stabbing chords and run on single notes.

Understatement, constant melodic invention, and his own sense of rhythm are earmarks of Perry's playing. A rendition of the melody of "Lonely Town" feels almost unbearably vulnerable in its lack of adornment. Nearly inaudible at the onset, Perry's "I Love Paris" solo stretches and yawns over the vamp before his tone gradually becomes harder and notes more pronounced. During "There's A Boat Dat's Leavin' Soon For New York," he digs into the jaunty swing of the bass and drums with just a slight amount of traction, blithely sails over them, and sometimes executes extended lines in a soft, non-threatening manner.

Leaving ample room for Malinverni's bounding single note combinations and chordal comments, Hagans's "Venice—Cities & Memory" solo is in a constant state of flux. He ably fuses brief bravado themes, steely extended lines, and sputtering afterthoughts. The trumpeter floats forlorn reveries over the band, a bent note blooms into a lovely phrase, and a few energetic runs are all part of a solemn improvisation on "Salem—Hester Prynne."


Track Listing: I Love Paris; New Orleans - Cities & Desire; Chicago; Venice--Cities & Memory; Cities & Time; Lonely Town; Istanbul; Salem--Hester Prynne; There's a Boat Dat's Leavin' Soon For New York; A City Called Heaven.

Personnel: Pete Malinveri: piano; Tim Hagans: trumpet & flugelhorn; Rich Perry: tenor saxophone; Ugonna Okegwo: bass; Tom Melito: drums.

Title: Invisible Cities | Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Reservoir Music

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Live at Pyatt Hall CD/LP/Track Review Live at Pyatt Hall
by Jack Bowers
Published: January 23, 2018
Read Flying Heart CD/LP/Track Review Flying Heart
by Troy Dostert
Published: January 23, 2018
Read The 3Dom Factor: Live in Krakow CD/LP/Track Review The 3Dom Factor: Live in Krakow
by John Sharpe
Published: January 23, 2018
Read Solano Canyon CD/LP/Track Review Solano Canyon
by Glenn Astarita
Published: January 23, 2018
Read Lucas CD/LP/Track Review Lucas
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: January 22, 2018
Read In Paris: The Definitive ORTF Recording CD/LP/Track Review In Paris: The Definitive ORTF Recording
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: January 22, 2018
Read "Miles Goes Wes" CD/LP/Track Review Miles Goes Wes
by Jack Bowers
Published: April 18, 2017
Read "Lighthouse" CD/LP/Track Review Lighthouse
by Mark Sullivan
Published: December 15, 2017
Read "Rendering" CD/LP/Track Review Rendering
by Mark Christian Miller
Published: December 27, 2017
Read "Kind Of New 2: Blue Is Paris" CD/LP/Track Review Kind Of New 2: Blue Is Paris
by Jeff Winbush
Published: August 3, 2017
Read "Looking Forward" CD/LP/Track Review Looking Forward
by Geannine Reid
Published: September 6, 2017
Read "Great Lakes" CD/LP/Track Review Great Lakes
by Doug Collette
Published: November 26, 2017