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Carlo Mombelli: Lullaby for Planet Earth

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Carlo Mombelli: Lullaby for Planet Earth
Carlo Mombelli's patience is profound. Long a believer in allowing music to unfold at its own pace, the veteran South African bassist/composer demonstrates incredible composure in his every pursuit. Always unforced and forever bound to both the natural and spiritual realms, his art reflects a purity linking the concepts of self- command and surrender. In that respect, in using his own unique voice, he speaks to universal hope and possibilities.

There's already plenty of evidence to support the aforementioned statements, with Mombelli's appearance on more than 100 recordings, but Lullaby for Planet Earth makes the case as well as anything. Leading a trio featuring guitarist Wolfgang Muthspiel and drummer/vibraphonist Jorge Rossy, the bassist delivers arresting chamber jazz that's contained within its own blueprints yet borderless in its discoveries and search for the divine.

Opening on a hushed recitation of the title phrase from "It Hurts When I Laugh, It Tickles When I Cry," the trio goes on to paint peaceable images at the borders of the composition. At the center, however, sits an entrancing episode built atop Mombelli's odd-metered footings. "Gentle," also moving between two poles, offers both a quiet, classically-informed sound and some rhythmically routed lines in seven. Blending the intimate and refined with the entrancing and otherworldly, this outfit establishes its own signature sound with that one-two combination.

As the journey continues, scenery seems to expand while interplay deepens. "Gina's Song," both heated and hypnotic, raises the level of intensity in the music; "Daniel," given in tribute to cellist Daniel Pezzotti, moves from mysterious invocation to absolute beauty; "Clouds," laying out clear roles, presents foundational bass work beneath twined guitar and vibes; and "Athens," with Rossy's unhurried mallet lines out front, builds with coolly capacious thoughts.

Working toward a conclusion, Mombelli and company continue to impress with alluring intimacy. The prayerful title number, tracking itself at the core while breathing at the margins, proves mesmerizing. The cloistered "Letters of Love" plays true to its name. "Clouds -Reprise" engages in some job swapping to differentiate from the original, with Muthspiel below, Mombelli out front and Rossy back on drums. And uncertainty gives way to comforting expression on the exiting "Compassion -The Hug." Tapping into his own rich emotions and memories while allowing the music to reveal itself on its own terms, Carlo Mombelli lives up to his reputation. He continues to demonstrate wisdom in action with Lullaby for Planet Earth.

Track Listing

It Hurts When I Laugh, It Tickles When I Cry; Gentle; Gina's Song; Daniel; Clouds; Athens; Lullaby for Planet Earth; Letters of Love; Clouds - Reprise; Compassion - The Hug.

Personnel

Carlo Mombelli: bass; Wolfgang Muthspiel: guitar; Jorge Rossy: drums.

Album information

Title: Lullaby for Planet Earth | Year Released: 2022 | Record Label: Clap Your Hands

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