Touching Extremes review by Massimo Ricci

JÚLIO RESENDE – Da alma (CF 095) 
There is some measure of poetry in the music of pianist and composer Resende, in this occasion accompanied by João Custódio on double bass, Alexandra Grimal and Zé Pedro Coelho on tenor sax (in different tracks), João Lobo and João Rijo on drums (idem). “Da Alma” is a humble album that seems to voluntarily shroud thoughts and reflections with a veil of naiveté. Themes and harmonic relations are deployed with respectful delicacy, at times winking at the nostalgic factors (so to speak) that composers like – say – Lyle Mays might have hinted to in their past artistic choices. Elsewhere, like in “Filhos da Revolução” or “Move it!”, this is meshed with melodic intuitions that travel as fast as kids’ fantasies do when they hear a strange yet attractive lullaby. This mixture of candid simplicity and technical expertise works finely for the large part of the program, giving life to sensations ranging from relaxing to quite touching in short time spans. It’s pretty straightforward sonic painting, nothing that requires a degree in rocket science to be enjoyed; and it’s quite easy to digest, moments of refined intensity testifying about the deceptive trait of ingenuousness that characterizes it. There’s no trace of posing from the musicians; a fresh disposition to the interpretation of the scores, even a few uncertainties in a couple of tortuous sections are also evident. It all makes sense, though, the whole amounting to nearly one full hour of problem-free listening.

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