Bruno Sanfilippo – Unity

unityDeservedly, this past Valentine’s Day saw more awe-struck sharing of pictures, video and stories about Tamar Kvesitadze’s extraordinary piece The Statue of Love. If this bit of sculptured beauty hasn’t found its way onto your Facebook feed yet, it is a kinetic piece based on Ali and Nino, a traditional Georgian love story. The artist designed two seven-ton statues that merge into one on a daily basis, all set to a colourful light show.

On a smaller scale, but no less beautiful, we’ve also received Bruno Sanfilippo’s new Unity. The Barcelona musician and composer continues to deliver world-class, heart-breaking work. With a dual focus on minimalist piano and electroacoustic works, Sanfilippo brings an intensely romantic sensibility to his music. This one might be his best yet. (Which is saying something; his catalogue is 20-titles long.)

Unity opens with “Spiral,” a delicate, almost religious ambient offering that progresses to a disconcerting electronic conclusion.

Next we get Sanfilippo at the piano. “One” is as good a showcase as any of his tender approach to the instrument. When it’s paired with strings, as in this piece, that gentleness is only amplified.

“Lux” comes next, and with it an uptick in energy. While some pieces are quiet and introspective, this one has a more celebratory feel.

The album’s title piece is also its longest, at nearly 11 minutes. Despite its length, it is remarkably accessible. Sanfilippo has this ability to wring all of the stuffiness out of classical music.

“Unity” is practically a pop song. Which is not to say that it lacks sophistication. Quite the opposite. Like the rest of the album, its uncluttered clarity and sweet melodies are hard not to fall in love with.

Kevin Press

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