Feb 8 2018
One of the nice things about artists and labels discovering the Bandcamp site is the opportunity to revisit some of the older albums in a musician’s discography as they upload them at the same time as a recording of a more recent vintage. Case in point: Angelo Mastronardi.
The pianist released a new album in 2017 called New Things, Same Words. It’s a solid straight-ahead session, and sounds like it could source from NYC as easily as the pianist’s Gioia del Colle, Italy home turf. It’s got a free-flowing lyricism that displays plenty of activity, but keeps it tightly focused… like a wildly fluttering butterfly that doesn’t roam outside a square foot of sky. The rhythm section of double bassist Stefano Rielli and drummer Alex Semprevivo develop a conversant chatter that stays light on its feet, enhancing the buoyant melodicism from Mastronardi and saxophonist Emanuele Coluccia. The upbeat pieces kick up a little fire but nothing that could burn, and while they’re plenty enjoyable, it’s when the quartet slows down and makes a melody smoulder with heavy emotion that the album shines strongest.
Your album personnel: Angelo Mastronardi (piano, Fender Rhodes), Emanuele Coluccia (tenor and soprano saxophones), Stefano Rielli (double bass) and Alex Semprevivo (drums).
Released on Gleam Records. Listen to more of the album on the artist’s Bandcamp page.
It’s a different kind of sound on Mastronardi’s 2014 recording, Like at the Beginning. Most noticeable is how the atmosphere changes when it’s a trio setting, and Mastronardi is the primary conductor of the melodic electricity. This album is far snappier than its 2017 counterpart, and its volatile energy is directed laterally far more than cyclically. It, too, could easily be identified as something coming from NYC as Italy. This quality is somewhat surprising considering this album was released on Dodicilune Records, a label that tends to release music that takes on folk and chamber characteristics reflective of the Mediterranean scenes. With double bassist Michele Maggi and drummer Walter Forestiere rounding out the trio, sometimes they dig into a groove and sometimes they drift into a ballad, but for the most part, this is music that sticks to a sunny tone and chipper disposition
Your album personnel: Angelo Mastronardi (piano), Michele Maggi (double bass) and Walter Forestiere (drums, percussion).