After the release of several trio and quartet albums, Antonio Flinta, a Chilean-born pianist now based in Italy, tries on the solo piano format for size. He wears it well. Secrets Of A Kiri Tree
features Flinta alone at the keyboard, exploring three of his engagingly melodic originals along with four covers, including Thelonious Monk's "'Round Midnight."
"Cancion De Amor" comes from the songbook of flamenco guitarist Paco de Lucia. It is a song of love, tinted indigo, an examination of the emotion that includes joy as well as a hint of the bittersweet, an acknowledgment that love can go wrong. Flintas follows this with "We Met Once," an original which, thematically if not melodically, seems to run parallel to Leonard Bernsteiin's "Some Other Time," (covered often by Bill Evans
) with a feeling of a missed opportunity at a romantic connection.
With solo piano albums, the soundthe capturing of the pianist's touch, the clarity of toneis all important. It is done superbly here. Each note rings clear, vibrations surging through the washed air after a rainstorm.
"Gracias a la Vida," from the pen of Violetta Parra, the Chilean singer & songwriter, is delivered with strength and grace, in much the manner that pianist Bobo Stenson
presents the beautiful melodies of Cuban folk singer Silvio Rodriquez. Flinta immerses himself hereand everywhere on the setin the music to become part of it, especially on "Yone y Elena," a tranquil reverie, as delicate and beautiful as a flower, underlain by a subtle yet unyielding strength. Secrets Of A Kiri Tree
is an album of cohesive, start-to-finish loveliness, a sound which can be piped out to the patio and enjoyed over wine and bread and cheese, and good company.
And again, the closer: Monk's "'Round Midnight." Flinta plays it straight until his solo, when he veers away on a tangent then pulls into a parallel of the familiar melody, playing extended variations on the theme before he curves back in to close things with this excellent rendition.
Canción de Amor; We Met Once; I Hear a Rhapsody; Gracias a la
Vida; Be at One With This World; Yone y Elena; ‘Round Midnight.