Renato Diz: piano; Maria Quintanilla: vocals.
Recorded in just one take with improvised arrangements, the tunes of “Distance Chemistry” might not be an ideal choice for some intrepid explorers of the contemporary jazz scene, but that doesn’t mean they’re not adventurous in their own style.
Both based in NYC, the emergent and rhythmically bold Portuguese pianist, Renato Diz, and the confident Peruvian singer, Maria Quintanilla, prove to have a beneficial chemistry. In no rare occasions, their musical choices reminded me another duo, Tuck & Patti, in their explorations of diverse styles that not only jazz. Besides a few well-known jazz standards, whose highlight is an uncanny version of “Strange Fruit”, the duo effortlessly incurs into R&B, gospel, and reggae territories with covers of Bill Withers, Jevetta Steele, and Stevie Wonder. However, it was with one of their improvised fantasias entitled “Conversation I” that they impressed me most. The cited piece pulsates with a catchy African feeling and exciting melodic counterpoints.
01 – Conversation I ► 04 – Strange Fruit ► 07 – Master Blaster