Silent Room, the duo formed by Enzo Carniel and Filippo Vignato is a conversation. Between the piano of the first and the trombone of the second, two living forces of the European jazz scene; between France and Italy; between acoustics and electronics. A patient dialogue initiated on the benches of the conservatory in Paris, which was nourished by the music of German trombonist Albert Mangelsdorff (to whom the duo paid homage for a concert at the Cité des Arts in 2014), musical moments shared as a group (Enzo Carniel's sextet at the Jazz à la Villette festival in particular) and in pairs - for numerous concerts given on both sides of the Alps - before perfecting their common grammar, giving birth to their own repertoire, creating their own space.
This first album, Aria, released on the Franco-Japanese label MENACE, was recorded in the setting of the Villa Cicaletto in Tuscany, whose Silent Room the duo made their own in September 2019. Carniel had just released Wallsdown, the third elegiac disc of his House of Echo project (Jazz & People, 2020) and Vignato of an intense live duo recorded with American cellist Hank Roberts (Ghost Dance, on CamJazz in 2019).
The album is carried by simple melodies, tenuous threads on which the two improvisers who have slowly got to know each other crisscross and let their voices express themselves. Aria can refer to the opening of Bach's Goldberg variations, to sung opera arias, but above all to any expressive melody that develops the imagination. Aria is also the air in Italian: the air that comes from the breath, the air that fills the room, the air that vibrates and is transformed into sound. The repertoire is therefore this collection of Arias composed by Enzo Carniel and Filippo Vignato.
If the duo advocates with this album its jazz heritage - that of improvisation and conversation, of freedom and virtuosity - and claims to be Carla and Paul Bley, Keith Jarrett, Gary Valente, Albert Mangelsdorff, Ornette Coleman or John Surman; it also explores the contemporary colors of electronic music, ambient and Japanese minimalism. The use of the prepared piano, Fender Rhodes and synthesizers colors the sound space of the acoustic piano and trombone. The eponymous composition that opens the album in acoustic, closes it in an electronic version, illuminating the path of the duo between the two universes.
In the almost plant-like composition "In All Nilautpaula", Enzo Carniel evokes the water lily (in Sanskrit) coming to purify the water around him. On "Babele", Filippo Vignato invokes the great question of language: thanks to Arias, and therefore melodies, language becomes universal through music, and only the sensory experience counts.
Born from Carniel and Vignato's desire to create a sound space that would be filled with as many melodies as silence, a place for listening, dialogue and meditation, Aria is one of those rare records that contain entire worlds.
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