Bernardo Sassetti: Unreal - Sidewalk Cartoon

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Pianistyka Jazzowa
premiera polska:
kontynent: Europa
kraj: Portugalia
opakowanie: kartonowe etui

All About Jazz - ocena * * * 1/2:
The music on Unreal forms a mysterious soundtrack. After reading the part of the liner notes that were translated into English, the general story is still very unclear (a lot gets lost in translation) but fortunately the music mostly stands well by itself. Pianist-composer Bernardo Sassetti used many musicians on this project although not all at one time. Two pieces utilize a percussion section filled with marimbas, vibes, xylophones, and percussive instruments, and four woodwinds and a French horn are used on seven other numbers with two of those pieces also adding four saxophonists. Along the way altoist Perico Sambeat gets a little bit of solo space and Sérgio Carolino's tuba is important in some of the ensembles. Many moods (some of them quite dark) are explored and the ensembles range from very dense to Sassetti's thoughtful solo piano. Thelonious Monk's "Evidence" is included almost as comic relief before the mood switches again. This music seems inscrutable at first but becomes more accessible with each listen, and the overall results are worthwhile and worth exploring.
by Scott Yanow

Editor's info:
Known for his film soundtracks as much as for his straight-ahead jazz recordings, Portuguese pianist and composer Bernardo Sassetti has with the new "Unreal: Sidewalk Cartoon" his most ambitious work ever, comprising the two aspects of his musical output, from the mainstream to the cinematic and beyond. In every aspect: the disk is accompanied by a surprising and beautiful book of photo assemblages (he did it all himself, photography and digital manipulation), and the music tell us a story in an almost narrative way, with lots of non-sense and humour, gathering musicians from both the jazz and the classical contemporary music scenes. There's a percussion ensemble, Drumming (eight performers playing marimbas, vibraphone, glockenspiel, steel drums, cymbals, Chinese bells, tam-tam, woodblocks, etc.), a woodwind / brass quintet, Cromeleque (with clarinets, oboe, bassoon, flutes and French horn), a saxophone quartet, Saxofínia (going from alto to baritone), two of the most important jazz drummers around, also active in other music genres, like rock and world music, Alexandre Frazao and José Salgueiro, the internationally known, specially in classical contexts, tubist Sérgio Carolino, a double bassist in ascension, António Augusto Aguiar, a flute soloist, Nuno Inácio, and finally the Spanish saxophonist / flutist, and Sassetti's regular partner, Perico Sambeat. And, of course, Bernardo Sassetti conducting and sitting at the piano, besides contributing to the polyrhythmic platform of all events with more vibes, steel percussion and gongs. A superb achievement in terms of arrangement and orchestral direction, there's many layers here to discover, making us remember Max Roach's percussion group experiences, some of the flavour we find in "Cape Verdean Blues", by Horace Silver, and the most advanced writing for percussion, the one by Xenakis for instance. It could be pretentious and megalomaniac, but it's not, thanks to the general irony and to the apparently "easiness" of everything that happens, track by track. "Unreal" is the definitive affirmation of a musical genius and one of the best records coming from Portugal in many years. Very highly recommended.

Alberto Roque - baritone sax
Alexandre Frazao - drums
Angelina Rodrigues - flute
António Augusto de Aguiar - bass
António Sergio - percussion
Bernardo Sassetti - piano
Helder Vales - french horn
Jean-Michel Garetti - oboe
Joao Cunha - percussion
Joao Tiago - percussion
Jose Lopes - alto sax
Jose Massarrao - alto sax
Jose Salgueiro - drums
Lurdes Carneiro - basoon
Mário Marques - tenor sax
Miquel Bernat - percussion
Nuno Aroso - percussion
Nuno Inácio - flute
Pedro Oliveira - percussion
Perico Sambeat - alto sax
Rui Rodrigues - percussion
Rui Rosa - bass clarinet
Sergio Carolino - tuba

1. Prólogo
2. Conjuntivo Plural do Iniciativo
3. Ernesto - Misterioso - Obsessivo
4. Dona Antónia ( Movimentos Oblíquos)
5. Interlúdio: Experiencias Tec- Efeitos Secundários
6. Coreografia de um jogo lento
7. Evidence ( T. Monk)
8. I left my heart in Algândaros de Baixo
9. Si te Contara ( F. Reina )
10. Conjuntivo Caminho
11. Domínio da Música
12. Macâncios. Alquimias . Indumentária
13. Sidewalk Cartoons

wydano: 2006
nagrano: 2006
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