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Enrico Rava quintet/sextet Tribes: remarkable and inspired,
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This review is from: Tribe (Audio CD)
Since his return to ECM eight years ago, the great Italian trumpeter Enrico Rava has released some beautiful and inspired quintet recordings: "Easy Living" recorded June 2003 with Petrella (trombone), Bollani (piano), Bonaccorso (double-bass), Gatto (drums); "The Words and the Days" recorded December 2005 with Pozza (piano) taking the place of Bollani; "New York Days" recorded February 2008 with Bollani (piano), Turner (tenor saxophone), Grenadier (double-bass), Motian (drums). After a little more than two years from the latest quintet work, here comes this new work titled "Tribe", recorded October 2010. The almost all new Italian quintet features Petrella (trombone), Guidi (piano). Evangelista (double-bass), Sferra drums, and becomes a sextet in 4 of the 12 tracks for the addition of Ancillotto on electric guitar.
Results: great and highly enjoyable music from Mr. Rava, where lyrical themes and seductive and brilliant improvisations are always perfectly combined. Similarly to "The Words and the Days", the core of "Tribe" is in the remarkable and inspired interactions between Rava and Petrella, always on the forefront of this quintet/sextet. But in "Tribe" the rhythm section (piano-bass-drums) reaches an even higher level and balance, with Guidi, Evangelista and Sferra doing some really attractive work that envelopes the two horns with a warm and harmonically rich canvas. Musical atmospheres still fit in the ECM aesthetic canon, yet becoming less melancholic and more reassuring and heartening. Electric guitarist Ancillotto, with a style that could be possibly compared to the one of John Abercrombie (that recorded in the past with Mr. Rava) is a very welcome addition to the quintet. His contributions, limited to some subtle accompaniments and a striking solo, are well integrated with the work of the other musicians and further enlarge the musical palette of this great album. I hope to hear more from him in the future.
Needless to say, recording quality is top notch, as usual from ECM and recording engineer Stefano Amerio at the ArteSuono Studio in Udine, Italy. Conclusions: totally recommended even if you have the other recent quintet releases, just plan some repeated listening sessions to fully appreciate this music.