Category Archives: CD-Reviews

Review a CD / album

Claudio Scolari Project: Cosmology

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Drummer and composer Claudio Scolari and his experimental jazz project have released a new album called ‘Cosmology’. It is the second album that has been recorded live and it features his long-time partner Daniele Cavalca on synthesizers and piano, his son Simone Scolari on trumpet and Michele Cavalca on bass.

The 13 tracks on the album circle around an imaginary journey into time and space.  The compositions are all originals by Claudio Scolari & Daniele Cavalca (except ‘Collision’ which is by Simone Scolari & Daniele Cavalca).

The album start with ‘Dark Matter’, a song that builds on a steady drums groove. The trumpet defines the mode of the song supported by changing patterns from piano and synthesizer. This is the trademark of this band, the combination of the natural sounds from trumpet and drums plus the electric and synthetic sounds by bass, piano and synthesizer.

‘Magnitude’ builds on an intensive synthesizer pattern, drums come and go, the trumpet and the piano are in a constant dialogue.

‘Hyper Galaxy’ changes to a much more spacious sound impression, fulfilling our expectations of unlimited time and space. The lonely (Miles Davis inspired) trumpet intensifies this impression.

‘Aurora’ is much more tangible. Based on a synthesizer riff this song develops into some kind of happiness. Definitely my favorite song on the album. The band produced a nice video to demonstrate the recording process:

‘Zenith’ is the next song on the album and is more densely packed with drums, bass and piano following a pushing groove.

‘Spectrum’ develops like ‘Dark Matter’ over a steady groove. Noticeable here is Michele Cavalca on bass who is much more present and plays an active role in the dialogue between the musicians.

The title song ‘Cosmology’ comes next. This short tune features Daniele Cavalca on a slightly odd acoustic piano.

‘Blue Shift’ is a slow and contemplative song. Nice echo effects on the trumpet.  The end of this song is much more intense and is inspired by the pushing drums of Claudio Scolari.

‘Aphelion’ comes packed with bass and drums setting the pace. Piano and trumpet follow initially before the mode changes and becomes more open which allows all four musicians to start a conversation.

‘Lunation’ brings back peace and quietness. The song stays very open with drums, bass and trumpet and some harsh kicks from the piano.

‘Black Hole’ starts with a clear trumpet and reminds me on scenes from the morning of judgement day. Heavy bass groove by a synthesizer bass and a steady intensification characterize this song.

‘Collision’ sounds like dance. Great drums and percussion work.

The album ends with ‘Nebula’ a song which begins in an undefined mode before the piano plays some broken pop ballad harmonies. The song and the album end with the trumpet vanishing into infinity.

‘Cosmology’ is another great album by Claudio Scolari and his project. The band has found its style and coherence. The arrangements are full of different sounds and ideas and allow to improvise and to get into dialogue with each other.

More information on Claudio Scolari is available on his updated website:
https://www.claudioscolari.com/

And finally the album as playlist on Spotify:

 

New Releases

Many albums have been released in the last few months so I thought it might be time to present again a list of my favorites.


Dave Stryker - Baker’s Circle

http://www.davestryker.com/

Dave Stryker did it again. He released a great album with his favorite musicians Jared Gold on organ and McClenty Hunter on drums plus Walter Smith III on sax and Mayra Casales on percussion. Perfectly played organ trio+, Dave Stryker never disappoints.

 


Stewy von Wattenwyl – In the Giants Garden

https://www.stewyvonwattenwyl.ch/

From Bern, Switzerland (and currently my professor for ear training and jazz theory) comes pianist Stewy von Wattenwyl. The album features his trio with Giorgos Antoniou on bass and Kevin Chesham on drums and presents a perfectly played collection of the jazz piano canon with tunes from Herbie Hancock, Thelonious Monk, Keith Jarrett and more.

 


Philippe Lemm Trio – First Steps

https://www.philippelemm.com/

Drummer and composer Philippe Lemm leads this piano trio with Jeff Koch and the late Angelo Di Loretto on piano. The album will be released on March 26, but two fantastic songs are already available.  The trio impresses with great melodies and incredible energy.

 


Charlie Porter – Hindsight

https://www.charlieportermusic.com/

Grammy-winning trumpeter Charlie Porter has released an ambitious album with a great group of musicians like Mike Moreno on guitar, Behn Gillece on vibes and Nick Biello on saxophone. The album contains nine originals from Charlie Porter in various styles from hard bop to rap and gospel and reflects the tumult and uncertainty of the times and thoughts of how we’re going to leave the planet for the next generation. The album convinces with sophisticated compositions and the outstanding playing of Charlie Porter.


Finally a complete playlist with all songs from the four albums