Samstag, 28. Februar 2015

Ariel Ardit: “Aníbal Troilo 100 Años”

With this album, Ariel Ardit and his `orquesta tipica´ (with 3 violins and 1 viola, 4 bandoneons, 1 double bass and 1 piano) celebrate the 100th birthday of highly influential bandoneonista-composer-director Anibal Troilo (1914-1975).The homage includes 16 of Troilo´s `Golden Age´ hits (ok, “Desencuentro” was published 1962) and one contemporary song dedicated to the “Thick Angel” (“Angelito Gordo”, written by Javier Sanchez). 
The project started as a `spontaneous idea´ when Ariel Ardit and his pianist-arranger-director Andrés Linetzky were waiting at the airport. The singer explained that he was moved by Aníbal Troilo's sound and sensitivity. His distinctive format was an exquisite `orquesta tipica´ - and the simple fact that today Ariel Ardit and his ensemble have a similar approach encouraged them to take the “historic opportunity to honor him on his 100th birthday”, the vocalist commented.
Andrés Linetzky has carefully adapted the old tangos for today´s audience, and has preserved the `old spirit´ with sensitivity and good taste. The pleasant arrangements are focused on the outstanding vocalist rather than on the orchestra, and no one would complain about it. Although Ariel Ardit has to compete with the original singers of the classical tangos (i.e., Francisco Fiorentino, Jorge Casal, Edmundo Rivero, Floreal Ruiz, Roberto Rufino, Roberto Goyeneche etc.), he definitely can keep up with the `old guard´. From my point of view, he leaves several of them behind.
Ardit refers to the tango tradition which endured from generation to generation. This album full of bitter-sweet nostalgia certifies that the old songs are still vital and very attractive in their new clothing. Not surprisingly, Ariel Ardit mentioned that Troilo´s “tangos bring us closer to the purest reflection and deep feelings." The singer and his orchestra interpret the compositions with passion and dynamic verve, and a bright shining smile because they do know that they already have us on their side.

This review will appear in issue 1 of Modern Tango World

Dienstag, 10. Februar 2015

Derrotas Cadenas: Escucha el Ruido

The quartet Derrotas Cadenos was founded in 2009 by the composers Pablo Gignoli (bandoneon) and Bruno Giuntini (violin); later on Juan Pablo (piano), and Rodrigo Loos (double bass) joined the team. Their 2012 debut album is tango mostly in its experimental `nuevo´ style, and obviously the composers try to fathom the boundaries of the tango genre.
The starter “El Hambre Mata” is a disquietingly song which holds appeasing parts, but turns back to propellent rhythmic pattern... hunger kills. Also the energetic “Vanguardia vieja” has these quite phases, but 1:54 minutes are too short to ease the old vanguard´s mind. Thus, why not give the melancholic  “Solo” a try? Yet also this song has another face (and an accentuated pulse). This ambivalence of almost all songs is an efficient stylistic device which makes it attractive to listen.      
The 1:51 minute “Patada demente” starts with a `disharmonic´ rhythmical structure which later on allows a violin to shine through the sudden widening of tonal space, yet entraps in the chaotic rhythmic structures again. “Veneno” is one of the few songs which is primarily atmospheric with sad piano chords, blue violin and bandoneon lines, double bass solo played with bow… - and no one knows where the sun may start to shine as an antidote to this sad poison.
“Los sueños de roma” starts as an agitating sound chaos which turns to a highly reduced arrangement with legato melody lines: There might be beauty within, but we have to wait for its delivery – and it might be that it is all without any hope.   
This music score is most appropriate for the concert hall, and surely will challenge the dancers. It is definitely `true music´, not written to tell some beautiful lies about bright sunshine and blue skies above. Dealing with this album means to leave your own expectations and trust this excellent quartet.