All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

237

Salvatore Bonafede Trio: Sicilian Opening

Raul d'Gama Rose By

Sign in to view read count
Sicilian Opening from Salvatore Bonafede is a wonderful album. It offers ample reason why Bonafede has been in demand by musicians as diverse as Ralph Towner, Enrico Rava, Dewey Redman, and Lester Bowie. The Italian pianist is an extremely gifted and melodic composer. His songs are utterly fascinating and memorable. They can flutter and soar, like birds on the wing, as "La Grande Ilusión" and "Appunti su Palermo," do. They gallop and swing with equal portions of equine grace and jazzy swagger as "Ideal Standard" does. Then there are those that echo in the mind's ear with marvelous and unforgettable lines that criss-cross each other with contrapuntal majesty, such as "Italiàn Ingegno" and "Torre Ligney."

Of course Bonafede is also a fine pianist who combines near perfect technique with just enough of a tilt in his manner of swing that it gives him a unique and ability to interpret his own and other written material with curious and original expression. His exacting statements of melody on the Beatles' "Blackbird" are a fine example of how he combines horizontal linearity with devastating horizontal elasticity. Thus he makes the song quite his own from chorus to chorus. Still the melody ripples and chirps under the surface cheerfully as the Bonafede leads the ensemble on a soaring journey. On "She's Leaving Home" he is even more daring as he darts in and out of the melody with the curved grace and elegance of a sublime craftsman in a swelling ocean of sound.

Although Bonafede tends towards a folksier, Southern Italian idiom, sometimes with the heavy influence of Arabic-Mediterranean quarter notes flavoring the melodic rush, he also shows himself to be an ever conscious of the blues. This is a singular feeling that seems to infuse the art of many musicians from the Peninsula and it is as unique as that of the Delta. While no pattern of 12 bars emerges here there is a bursting tension in the melodies that emerge when soaked in the Sicilian sun that ululate and wail from line to line throughout the stated melody as on "Appunti su Palermo." "bbbb" however is played in a more straight Delta style and is as authentic as one can ever be.

Bonafede has also chosen to constitute his trio wisely. Although drummer Marcello Pellitteri is a tad hard on the toms and the ride cymbal at times he offsets the piano's softness with graceful rhythmic patterns almost throughout. Bassist Marco Panascia is a master of tone and, at times, can even embellish a piece with subtle shades together with Pellitteri. "Lode al Silenzio" shows the two men to be in sublime control of their instruments allowing the pianist to shape and give body and characteristic emotion to the piece. Sicilian Opening is an album with many such gems and their discovery may require repeated listening of the material. In the end, though, it's all worth the effort.

Track Listing: Sicilian Opening; La Grande Ilusion; Ideal Standard; bbbb; WWW; Blackbird; It Plays From Far; Appunti su Palermo; Italian Ingegno; Lode al Silenzio; She's Leaving Home; Torre Ligny.

Personnel: Salvatore Bonafede: piano; Marcello Pelitteri: drums; Marco Panascia: bass.

Title: Sicilian Opening | Year Released: 2010 | Record Label: Music Eyes

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Sicilian Opening

Sicilian Opening

Salvatore Bonafede
Sicilian Opening

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles

Related Articles

Read Half Light CD/LP/Track Review
Half Light
by Karl Ackermann
Published: May 24, 2018
Read The Groove Hunter CD/LP/Track Review
The Groove Hunter
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: May 24, 2018
Read Powered by Life CD/LP/Track Review
Powered by Life
by Geno Thackara
Published: May 24, 2018
Read Seymour Reads The Constitution! CD/LP/Track Review
Seymour Reads The Constitution!
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: May 24, 2018
Read Mephiti CD/LP/Track Review
Mephiti
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 24, 2018
Read Seymour Reads The Constitution! CD/LP/Track Review
Seymour Reads The Constitution!
by Doug Collette
Published: May 23, 2018
Read "The Answer Is No" CD/LP/Track Review The Answer Is No
by Jack Bowers
Published: December 28, 2017
Read "The Best of Big Star" CD/LP/Track Review The Best of Big Star
by Doug Collette
Published: July 16, 2017
Read "Day After Day" CD/LP/Track Review Day After Day
by John Eyles
Published: July 21, 2017
Read "Living Tribute" CD/LP/Track Review Living Tribute
by Jack Bowers
Published: May 27, 2017
Read "All Melody" CD/LP/Track Review All Melody
by Phil Barnes
Published: March 23, 2018
Read "Ellipse" CD/LP/Track Review Ellipse
by Karl Ackermann
Published: December 4, 2017