Antonio Trinchera: Voce Falena

The fifty-minute Voce Falena proves to be a showcase for both the composer and player sides of Italian artist Antonio Trinchera, with some tracks spotlighting his penchant for electronic-ambient soundscaping and other settings giving his guitar playing ample space to breathe. His debut album is an encompassing work that manages to explore multiple directions—ambient, jazz, and classical primarily—without sacrificing a sense of overall unity. Trinchera brings to the project many years of experience: he began studying classical guitar at the age of thirteen and gained exposure to blues and jazz under the tutelage of Italian guitarist Nico Stufano. Having played in many different ensembles and configurations since 1990, Trinchera initiated his recording career by contributing to Psychonavigation's Zaum Vol. 1 album (“Last Love Inside Love”) and the song “Into The Sun” (composed by Andrea Scaevola) to the EP Hybris on Inglorious Ocean.

Though pervaded by a sense of slow drift, “Egypt” is closer in spirit to spacey electronica with its head more in the upper stratosphere than in the desert plains, given its wholly synthetic character. The title track's becalmed surfaces are so smooth the setting borders on New Age, while “Just To See You Tomorrow” is as pretty as it is polished. If “Cantus Patris” situates its single-note piano playing within a reverberant cathedral, the album closing version of same allows the elegant piano playing (this time played by Dony Valentino) to be heard sans reverb. The album's material shows Trinchera the guitarist to be particularly explorative: exotic percussion and bluesy slide shadings lend “Sevilla” an appropriately Spanish feel; wah-wah effects and tribal percussion in “Dark Sea” evoke Dark Magus; and “Odyssey” suggests the work of a small jazz trio, with Trinchera's legato electric soloing heard alongside acoustic jazz drumming and electric bass. Many pieces unite the ambient and guitar playing sides (such as “Exploration Part 1,” where jazz guitar shadings are heard against a restrained electronic backdrop), and bridging the dimensions even further, Trinchera sometimes electronically manipulates his guitar playing so that it's heard more fluidly and in multi-layered form. By now it should be obvious that Voce Falena succeeds most of all as a portrait of the artist and as a document of his multiple areas of interest.

October 2010