by Giorgio Zito
The fifth album of Newpoli focuses on the Mediterranean, a sea that the band stationed in Boston wants to be considered as a bridge between the different cultures that surround it, and not as a wall that divides them. We are talking about emigration on more than one occasion on this journey in the music of southern Italy, a journey that starts from " Mediterraneo": a song that immediately makes us enter the central theme of the album, the emigration, and in the musical world this diverse training backgrounds and cultures ( Carmen Marsico and Angela Rossi hand, Fabio Pirozzolo tambourine and singing, Björn Wennåsswing guitar, mandolin and classical guitar, Jussi Reijonen oud, mandolin and classical guitar, Daniel Meyers bagpipes, bagpipe and flutes rights, Karen Burciaga violin and Jeff McAuliffe bass). The sounds that we find in the disc start from the tradition of southern Italy, but are open to contamination, passing from neighboring Turkey and Greece to get to North Africa, without forgetting the influences from the Arab world or from Albania, already present in some areas of the South.
The starting point is the traditional southern music, in which tarantelle and pizziche stand out. " Nu pizzicu " is a traditional pinches Salento, supported by the overwhelming rhythm of tambourines, on which stand the two female voices, which ends in a choral song with a real explosion of sounds, becoming a celebration of dance and joy. Equally successful was the reworking of " Pizzica degli Ucci", A sweet traditional lullaby for voice and mandola that turns into a wild pinch, in which the two female voices alternate in a blow and answer, while little by little all the instruments enter, in a vortex in which it is impossible to be firm. A perfect example of what it means to let the tradition live. Also excellent shooting " The jocu of the palumbella " (from the repertoire of Taranproject ) in which the voices alternate in a whirlwind of color and sound, and the reworking of the traditional " Lu poveru Vicenzino", Built with a whirling crescendo that starts from the voices only to then add, from time to time, percussion, guitars and various instruments, to end again with the only voices.
The eight members of the band are truly extraordinary musicians, and show their technical expertise in " Tarantella avernetella", a traditional piece coming from Basilicata, which revisits in a splendid way, combining it with a traditional song always coming from the same region. The Newpoli take possession of traditional music, plying with such mastery that original songs like the instrumental " Tarantella of Sciffra " or tammurriata Neapolitan " 'Na single voice", Could pass for traditional songs. A song, the latter, which is also an invitation addressed to each of us to become the main actor of the change we would like for our community.
Very nice also the ballads, the slow " I'm vogghje scenni 'n fintanella ", distinguished by the voice of Angela Rossi and violin Karen Burciaga , to " Lagr'm' " with the splendid alternation and interweaving of two beautiful voices of Marsico Carmen and Angela Rossi . Song that comes from a trip to Lucania, with inside influences of Arabic rhythms. The research into the sounds and influences of Newpoli comes to Africa with " Iere evening": Here a traditional text of a song from the Foggia is accompanied by a music composed by the band, creating a song that smells of desert blues and African rhythms. An emigrant music, as emigrants are the members of the Boston band (just read the surnames), and the lives told in many of the songs on the record, starting with the " So 'Emigrant' " in which Angela Rossi tells her story the story of a daughter of emigrants from southern Italy who moved to the north in the 70s, and in turn emigrated to the United States.
A truly wonderful record, which tells stories of emigrants of yesterday and today, with the intent to pass on the musical tradition of southern Italy without fear of contaminating it, knowing that contamination is the best way to keep it alive.