Label /Year: Jazz Family, 2017
Lineup - Vadim Neselovskyi: piano, melodica; Dan Loomis: bass; Ronen Itzik: drums + Sara Serpa (guest): vocals.
The talents of Ukrainian pianist Vadim Neselovskyi were recognized at a very young age. He was admitted to the Odessa Conservatory when he was only 15, and his career enjoyed a boost when the celebrated vibraphonist Gary Burton invited him to play in one of his albums. Burton also revealed a fondness for the pianist’s undeniable disposition for composition, incorporating a couple of his charts in his 2011 album, Common Ground.
With bassist Dan Loomis and drummer Ronen Itzik working as an interactive, supporting foundation, the pianist releases Get Up and Go, his first trio project.
“On a Bicycle”, retrieved from the 2011 Music For September, conveys the incredible excitement of riding a bike for the very first time. Galloping like a fugue, the piece reveals an impressive synchronization by the three elements who conceive a knotty blend of jazz and classical music. While the pianist boasts a powerful technique dominated by nimble counterpoints, melodic diagonals, and punctuations, the bassist and drummer remain tight, with the former exhibiting a clear, woody sound, and the latter’s a mix of mechanical chops and dynamic accentuations.
Conversely, “Winter” brings the severe melancholy of the season it tries to depict. It starts like a lullaby with solo piano, gaining a progressive somber tone through the addition of Loomis’ lugubrious bowed bass and Itzik’s persistent brushing cymbal.
Predominantly folk in its intonations, the animated “San Felio”, an integral part of Vadim’s previous CDs, invites us to a compound of Mediterranean pulses plus Keith Jarrett’s eloquent post-bop and Dave Brubeck’s rondo suggestions.
Portuguese singer Sara Serpa grants wordless chants to “Station Taiga”, a true-tone poem of lyrical musing. After creating a beautiful unison layer with Neselovskyi’s melodica, the voices split in search of a congruous independence.
Both the title track, remarkably gracious in its animated pop/rock, jazz, and classical movements, and “Prelude For Vibes”, preceded by a glorious solo bass interlude and filled with subtle and shaded nuances, were recorded prior to this recording. They appeared in Gary Burton’s Next Generation, where the veteran vibraphonist joined forces with a very talented young team composed of Neselovskyi himself, guitarist Julian Lage, bassist Lucques Curtis, and drummer James Williams.
“Krai”, a solo piano effort based on an Orthodox prayer, becomes one of the most satisfying tunes on the record, starting with a belligerent intro and evolving into a dramatic, almost doctrinal middle part that intersperses thundering low-pitched notes and scorching piano voicings with the very classical incisiveness brought up by Neselovskyi’s right hand.
Pleasant sound aesthetics, robust compositional awareness, and ever-shifting ambiances can be fully enjoyed on Get Up and Go.
03 – San Felio ► 06 – Krai ► 09 – Get Up and Go