Apr 9 2013
A nifty release by accordionist Vince Abbracciante, who brings a genuine drop-dead cool attitude to his instrument. Though Introducing… Vince Abbracciante qualifies as his debut recording, Abbracciante has been around the scene for a little while, notably as part of the The Bumps, a trio that will receive some print here in the near future.
Not unlike fellow accordionist Andrea Parkins, who recently contributed to Ches Smith‘s Hammered (reviewed here, on Bird is the Worm), Abbracciante evokes a bad-ass demeanor on accordion, while also providing a complementary fuzzy warmth to the sharp edges of multiple saxophone parts. And, yet, where Smith’s album was a barrage of dissonance, Introducing… offers up something far closer to a modern straight-ahead jazz recording, a work that will have plenty of appeal to listeners who prefer their Jazz to echo the sounds of the past, as well as those listeners who like their Jazz to keep their eyes on the road ahead.
Your album personnel: Vince Abbracciante (accordion), Roberto Ottaviano (tenor & soprano saxes), Fabrizio Scarafile (soprano sax), Giuseppe Delre (voice), Adriana Ciannella (voice), Juini Booth (bass), and Antonio Di Lorenzo (drums).
Some tracks, like album opener “Visione,” hark back to earlier times, when Jazz was beginning to transmute from Hard Bop to music with a harder exterior and a spiritual tone. “Em Mi” begins with a brooding tone, then, like a bird suddenly leaping into flight, the song takes off, gradually gaining speed up until the final note. And “Puglia” also charts a course that’s slow and moody, with bass offering intermittent words that resonate loud and clear, while accordion murmurs in the background.
But most tracks bring an upbeat tempo that’ll incite the foot to tap and the head to bop. “Yes or No” has sax flying over the top as accordion applies support from beneath, while drums clear out a path for everyone to roll through. And on “MDX,” drums and bass set a nice groove, while accordion paints at the groove’s edges. Tracks like “Nu Blu Bossa” and “La Jaiba” bring a Latin flavor to the affair, with cadences that pulse and flutter, and melodies that dart about like fish in a stream.
Most tracks reflect one of the Italian approaches to Jazz, infusing the music with some of the regional folk music, not unlike, say, the Simone Guiducci Gramelot Ensemble, but where Guiducci leans more to the rustic side of that spectrum, Abbracciante’s music hits more celebratory notes, and brings it more in line with traditional forms… a certain ebullience.
Definitely one to check out.
Released on the Bumps Records label.
Jazz from the Apulia, Italy scene.