Montag, 31. Dezember 2018

Altertango: Sie7e

The quartet Altertango had launched a test balloon with their 2017 EP Radiotango to see how the new song material will arrive. And here they are, 11 new songs: Dynamically and varied, with many surprising facets even in one and the same track (e.g. the CD´s first track “El Arrebato”). An exciting dynamic that works well. Also their second track, "La Sal, la Herida" written by Alejandro Guyot, impresses with a varied structure, two guest singers and a rap by Bruno Begueri.
What Pablo Conalbi (drums), Ezequiel Acosta (bandoneón), Gerardo Lucero (double-bass) and Elbi Olalla (piano) have to offer with their 2018 CD Sie7e is worth to be heard. They have invited many guest musicians, especially singers (Alejandro Guyot, Juan Pablo Fernández, Natalia Lagos, Alfredo Piro, Juan Saieg) – and they all fit well into the tango-jazz-rock sound spectrum that the quartet spreads. That´s the way contemporary tango pleases.
"Remolino De Recuerdos," written by Alejandro Guyot and Elbi Olalla (sung by great Alfredo Piro with Elbi Olalla), plays out all the strength of the ensemble: Drama, passion and playfulness that sweeps along.
"Fuega de Suerte," written by Juan Seren and Elbi Olalla (sung by irresistible Natalia Lagos) is certainly one of my favorite songs. But is that still tango? Hard to say – actually yes, but the ‘boundaries’ are badly strained. I like that the musicians try new territory and thus ventilate the contemporary tango well. Applause.
Artist´s website:

Donnerstag, 18. Oktober 2018

Hyperion Ensemble: Hasta Siempre Amor

At my father I have recently heard some dusty CDs of a series with recordings of the old masters of classical music and romance. Unfortunately, these were somewhat ‘dusty’, and the musicians were probably not playing with great passion. At least they didn't reach me, and the CDs again found their place in the Oblivion Valley.
Now I have got the new CD Hasta Siempre Amor of the 'Hyperion Ensemble', founded by the 1992. This ensemble is also playing the music by some old masters, but now of the Tango scene. And the experience is different: these musicians are present with all their heart, playing with verve and passion - and they are touching me.
We hear Guido Bottaro (piano), Josè Luis Betancor (bandoneon), Valerio Giannarelli (violin), Beppino Boracchia (violin), Danilo Grandi (double bass), Bruno Fiorentini (traverse flute) and Davide D’Ambrosio (guitar), and as singerx Ruben Peloni, Hernan Godoy and Martin Troncozo. With three pieces, Ruben Peloni and Hernan Gody are heard as duet partners, which is appealing because of their different singing styles.
Listening to the ensemble is great joy, because they live the 16 ‘classics’ with enthusiasm. Donato Racciatti´s Hasta siempre amor is a recommendation, in which Ruben Peloni can shine with his vocals: no exaggerated pathos, but longing restraint. Hernan Godoy brings his tenor voice to the attention with Lalo Etchegoncelay´s Adios Corazón and Osvaldo Fresedo´s Vida Mia. Unfortunately, Martin Troncozo has only two songs to convince the listeners, and with Caldara´s Pasional and especially with En esta tarde gris by Mariano Mores he has no problems to do so. With the use of the women trio 'Trio Cre Artis' as an additional 'timbre' in three songs, I can't really befriend myself, but that's probably a matter of taste.
With this album, the musicians again recommend themselves as a contemporary ensemble with a sense of tradition and a safe style that both dancers and movement skeptics can draw on his side. 

Published first in Tangodanza.75 - 3.2018

Mittwoch, 17. Oktober 2018

El Muro Tango & Juan Villareal: Nostalgico

Juan Pablo de Lucca´s new project “El Muro Tango” consists of Norwegian violinist Karl Espegard, Norwegian bandoneonist Åsbjørg Ryeng, Argentine double bass player Sebastian Noya, and Argentine pianist and composer Juan Pablo De Lucca. As an exceptional icing they have Argentine singer Juan Villareal at their side; he is singing with charm and persuasive power.
The quintet´s music is mainly `traditionally` Argentine tango, with some mild blends of jazz. The European musicians fit quite well in this old black-and-white picture taken somewhere in Buenos Aires, and now hanging somewhere in Oslo, Norway. This is global and nostalgic in its best way, yes.
Among the 12 songs we hear Pugliese´s Recuerdo, Di Sarli´s Bahía Blanco, Demare/ Manzi´s Malena and Zitarrosa´s El Violín. With these beautiful songs it is difficult not to attract the audience. They are well known and still fresh in their new interpretation of this devoted ensemble.
For me, Zitarrosa´s El Violín (starting with guitar and violin) is a song so bitter-sweet - difficult to resist and not to melt away. Other songs are more vivid, and attract with dynamic crescendos and delays of pace.
When Juan Pablo says that their intention was to play the old tangos “so that you do not have a museum feel, but that you listen to a popular artistic expression that lives in the present”, one can fully confirm: Goal achieved, excellent!