Enrico Rava / Giovanni Tommaso / Tommaso-Rava Quartet

La Dolce Vita

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Aficionados of European films will especially enjoy these treatments of movie themes, featuring a quartet jointly led by bassist Giovanni Tommaso and trumpeter/flügelhornist Enrico Rava, with pianist Stefano Bollani and drummer Roberto Gatto. Throughout the recording, there is a consistent sense of interplay where no one seems relegated to a role in the musical background. The highlight of these studio sessions is the extended, dramatic treatment of "La Dolce Vita," which unfolds into a multi-faceted arrangement that makes it seem like it would have made a fine film score itself. Rava's muted horn is the centerpiece of "Mondo Cane" (which incorporates the well-known song "More"). "Cronoca Familiare" mixes a solid hard bop foundation with adventurous solo flights by Bollani and Rava. There are also several originals written by the band's members. The bassist contributed the tense "Cinema Moderno," a piece full of delightful twists in a post-bop setting, as well as the lush ballad "La Prima Volta." Rava contributed the playful "Il Sogno di Hitchcock" and the moody "Ammazzare il Tempo," written for a 1979 film. The musicians keep their written comments to a minimum within the booklet, evidently preferring that listeners provide their own mental images to go with the quartet's intriguing music.

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