Recorded at an arts museum in Switzerland, the duo infuses easy to grasp, melodious pronouncements with chamber and avant-garde jazz sensibilities. However, pianist John Wolf Brennan (Ireland) and bassist Daniele Patumi (Italy) also intermix non-Western modalities into this beautifully constructed program. Known for their work with the multinational quartet, “Pago Libre,” the artists render interesting variations of generally, tuneful themes augmented by prepared bass and piano digressions. On, “Suite Arabique,” Patumi dishes out a pattern of complex bass lines for a work that is all about budding undercurrents and slightly ominous implications. Here, Brennan plucks and glides across his grand piano strings as the duo supplies us with a multitude of contrasting tonalities and counteracting statements. Whereas Brennan eventually alters the chemistry of this suite, thanks to his lyrically enticing work on melodica.
Putting some of the austere implications aside, this is a surprisingly accessible affair! Largely due to the musicians’ cunning ingenuity and penchant for incorporating harmonious arrangements into the grand scheme of things. Strongly recommended.