Shibui – Percorsi Musicali – July 2013 – by Ettore Garzia

Gil Evans and Charles Mingus died in the Mexican town of Cuernavaca. That circumstance is useful for to take account to two excellent figures of jazz that seem to draw “Shibui”, the last recording of the double bassist Enrico Fazio along with his band Critical Mass. Fazio is a musician that has always been in search of an instrumental global jazz, in which give priority to harmony and melody and enhance the ability of individual musicians at the same time. Also in this recording Fazio provides a value musical product, which has a strong point in the freshness of the musical solutions and in the emotional transport of the musicians of the band.*

A careful listening will reveal certain similarities but also new variations: in “Shibui” are evident orchestral strategies that were owned by Gil Evans and a strong sense of Mingus’s blues, but in hindsight, Fazio decides to take action with his visual (that of an efficient reconstructionist) transforming old sound sources into new identity of sound. In “Shibui” we can hear remnants of some anglosaxon jazz-blues idiom  (in “Effetti Collaterali” Enrico explicitly confirms, in the internal notes, that he has extrapolated his own rhythm from a song of the band Colosseum), or jazz rock accents that remember some evolutions of the sound of Canterbury (the long intro of “Shibui” takes us into one of those melodic “side-slipping” in style Hatfield and the North); Campioni’s violin remember us the similar use that Jean Luc Ponty did, but without electrification, while occasionally we front of unexpected ethnic scents (the turkish clarinet of “Pianoless” or the final percussive oriented-style “Tuttecose“).
So we must speak of osmotic effects, because in the end the result is an integrated cocktail of jazz, which belongs only to Fazio and his musicians: “Tempus fugit” builds a particular version of “Sister Sadie” arranged by Evans, as well as “Effetti Collaterali” seems a particular version of the deep and melodic song “Harvey’s Tune” (from Bloomfield-Kooper-Stills’s Superssions) which is focused on the rhythm and collective strength.