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Rosario Bonaccorso Quartet: A New Home

Read "A New Home" reviewed by Mark Corroto

There is a trend in jazz today to abandon beauty for technical ability. Odd meter and eccentric changes replace sympathetic music making, favoring skills over art. Thank the heavens there are those who have never abandoned beauty. One such musician is bassist Rosario Bonaccorso. His quartet recording A New Home is an exercise in elegance and style, featuring eleven original compositions by the bassist and leader. Pianist Enrico Zanisi returns from Bonaccorso's previous outing A Beautiful Story (Via Veneto Jazz, ...

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Enzo Pietropaoli: The Princess

Read "The Princess" reviewed by Mark Corroto

It can be risky for jazz musicians to play pop songs. They have to navigate the memories that each composition holds for the listener while also making the music distinctive and personal. Miles Davis could do it with Michael Jackson's “Human Nature" and Cyndi Lauper's “Time After Time," and of course Sonny Rollins can make any popular song his own. Add to that list, Enzo Pietropaoli. The bassist has been exploring popular music with his quartet, which has released three ...

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Rosario Bonaccorso: A Beautiful Story

Read "A Beautiful Story" reviewed by Mark Corroto

What does Theodore Roosevelt have do do with jazz? The saying “speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far," is attributed to the American President (1901-1909). What isn't well known is that he borrowed the proverb from West Africa. Which brings us full circle to African Americans, and, of course, jazz. That same platitude could be applied to Italian bassist Rosario Bonaccorso's recording A Beautiful Story for Via Veneto Jazz and Jando Music, since the music is ...

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Ameen Saleem: The Groove Lab

Read "The Groove Lab" reviewed by Alex Franquelli

Composer Irving Berlin once famously said that “everybody ought to have a Lower East Side in their life." True and, although technically speaking Brooklyn is not part of the octagon that thrives between Houston Street and FRD Drive, the groove, that precious intimate rumble of inspiration, is the one element that connects one area with the other; contemporary music and its multiple historical declinations. While the paradigm differs and keeps on evolving, the end result is invariably of a similar ...

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Funk Off: Things Change

Read "Things Change" reviewed by Alex Franquelli

The whole point, when it comes to marching bands, is that they have to well, stroll around while playing their instruments. I guess, you guess, that the whole point is lost on CD, where the mono-dimensional (time) facet of the spectrum monopolises the dynamics of the whole. Things Change makes obviously no exception, but does it matter? Not at all. The range of influences at play here is-- by itself--praiseworthy and laudable; the magnitude of their individual skillsets reveals a ...

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Francesco Nastro Trio: Colors of Light

Read "Colors of Light" reviewed by Alex Franquelli

As soon as one lets Francesco Nastro's fingers fondle those keys the way he does on “E all'Improvviso il Sole," the musical geometries that create Colors of Light finally come to life. The music springs from a cocoon-like environment in which pianists the likes of Bill Evans and Brad Mehldau must have forgotten their instruments around, which are by now subject to Nastro's gentle manners. It is jazz alright but, even more importantly, this is a study in melody; an ...

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Fabrizio Sferra Quartet: Untitled #28

Read "Untitled #28" reviewed by Alex Franquelli

It sounds great. It really does. It happens every time a record flows in such a way that it's possible to actually enjoy its variations, contrasts and colors. Yes, colors; Untitled #28 is full of them.Musically, for instance; the sound shaped by drummer Fabrizio Sferra's quartet is one which toys with perceptions of intensity and timbres in a way that appears to be utterly spontaneous, rather than planned. Sferra is undoubtedly one of the biggest names in Italian ...


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