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STEFANO LEONARDI

«Aura»
LEO RECORDS, LR 890

Italian Flautist Stefano Leonardi arranged an international quintet that explores different dimensions of «Aura» – breath – as the act of moving air, as light wind and a breeze, or as the necessary element of life, the vital breath. The quintet features Italian reeds player and Marco Colonna and cellist-guembri player Antonio Bertoni and Swiss double bass player and percussionist Heinz Geisser, all played in Leonardi’s last album, «L’eterno» (Leo, 2018). (The can read the review on salt peanuts* HERE). The album was recorded at Metro Rec Studio, Riva del Garda in July 2019.

The ten pieces are credited to the five musicians, as a working collective, and all suggest an evocative and colorful journey, focused on surprising and unfamiliar but always sensual aspects of breath. From an imitation of bird calls on «Kite» and through the mysterious and playful «Astral Garden» to the exotic-Middle-Eastern-tinged «Breath» and «Requiem», the hypnotic and sparse «Sand Shapes», to the disturbing, cinematic soundscape «Whirlwind» and the poetic «Pulse». Each piece deepens further the interplay of this quintet, incorporating traditional elements into the quintet inclusive aesthetics, and employing cleverly the extended breathing techniques of Colonna and the urgency of his playing, the inventive rhythm section of Bertoni, Blumer, and Geisser and, obviously, the always elegant playing of Leonardi, who keeps expanding his arsenal of flutes.

This quintet adopts dynamics of true sonic nomads, located in an imaginary space between West and East, present and archaic past, and always eager to articulate their experience in the most personal manner possible.

Eyal Hareuveni

Stefano Leonardi (f, piccolo, sulittu, dilli kaval, bass xun, launeddas (mancosedda)), Marco Colonna (cl, bcl, sopranino s), Antonio Bertoni (c, guembri), Fridolin Blumer (b), Heinz Geisser (perc, waterphone)

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