L' Orchestra Del Titanic is the first solo album by 25-year-old Florentine pianist Stefano Bollani, "Best New Talent 1999" according to Musica Jazz, Italy's leading jazz's magazine.
For years, Bollani, who has lately added his identifiable touch to many Italian jazz records, has expressed in interviews his search for a unique project to fit to his own musical taste to. As a young guy with a witty sense of black humor, the overwhelming recent popularity of the romance and tragedy of the film, Titanic was a perfect place to start.
Against whatever preconceptions his listeners bring to it, L' Orchestra Del Titanic does not re-create the lounge-jazz numbers the original the ill-fated ship's orchestra performed, nor does Bollani rely on James Horner's romantic score (or Celine Dion's unbelievably popular theme).
It does, however, feature Stefano Bollani's personal approach to the great melodic jazz tradition. The mostly original program belies a soft, sly and slightly seventies touch, aided in no small measure by guitarist Riccardo Onori, who reminds the listener of Sam Brown's playing with Keith Jarrett during the 1970s.
Everything here is appropriately elegant: the live recording, the pretty songs and the intimate tempos. Antonello Salis is especially notable on accordion, suggesting an even more lighthearted overall affair.
Stefano Bollani makes it possible to imagine yourself listening to a great little jazz combo filling a large ballroom with warm, intimate sounds while at least one beautiful couple dances passionately as the romantic lights begin to dim. You get the picture.