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Eamon Dilworth: Viata

Karl Ackermann By

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From its Romanian orgin, Viata translates to "Life." It is the new, independently produced album from Eamon Dilworth and his nameless quintet. Trumpeter Dilworth is not well-known in the U.S. but has received numerous awards in his native Australia. He has studied with some top brass talent including Lew Soloff, Ambrose Akinmusire, Dave Douglas and Avishai Cohen, and has recorded two previous albums as a leader/co-leader.

Pianist Alister Spence is the most recognizable member of the group, having recorded with saxophonist Raymond MacDonald and Myra Melford. In 2018, Spence was part of Satoko Fujii's Kira Kira project on Bright Force (Libra Records). Bassist Jonathan Zwartz won "Best Jazz Album" from the Australian Recording Industry Association for his The Remembering & Forgetting of the Air (Self-produced, 2013). Guitarist Carl Morgan performed throughout Australia with artists including Chris Potter, Jim McNeely, and Charlie Watts. Paul Derricott is a Sydney based drummer who has played regularly with the leader in his group, The Dilworths.

Viata is a moody collection of compact pieces—all original Dilworth compositions. The album opens with "A Love Affair"; a quiet, classically influenced duet between Dilworth and Spence, it nicely sets up the larger group for the darkly brooding "Discomfort." The latter piece features fine solo guitar from Morgan. It's not clear if Norwegian trumpeter Mathias Eick is the inspiration behind "Eick"—the longest piece on Viata—but one could certainly make that case upon listening.

During the course of the album Dilworth moves through opaque shades of ether such as on "Prelude Dreamtime" with its variable waves of wistfulness and the spare "Toran," playing to minimal and languorous qualities. Dilworth's compositions are open books that ebb and flow with the collective mood. The outcome of his reflective and mystical notions is a beautiful album that should bring some well-deserved recognition.

Track Listing: A Love Affair; Discomfort; Eick; Prelude to a Secret; The Hiding; Hey Ma Durga; Prelude Dreamtime; The Lady; Toran.

Personnel: Eamon Dilworth: trumpet; Alister Spence: piano; Jonathan Zwartz: double bass; Carl Morgan: guitar; Paul Derricott: drums.

Title: Viata | Year Released: 2018 | Record Label: Self Released


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