Gianni Mimmo: soprano saxophone; Daniel Levin: cello
What we baptize “improvisation” for shortage of persnickety terms can hide music that is virulent, lyrical, convoluted, rambling, or else. Even when responding to all the adjectives, a duo of improvising artists – as technically polished as they could be – can often turn into something more akin to two individuals who only talk to themselves on parallel courses of action, without really showing curiosity for what the partner has to say. This lack of involvement and, consequently, of breathing room is in essence an acoustic rendering of what happens when, in a conversation, one doesn’t let his/her interlocutor free to complete a string of words, the general tension increasing accordingly. When people keep stomping their ego’s feet on the natural stream of what the others want to express from the inside, that’s a major difficulty to start with. Turbulent Flow – in spite of the title, which might make someone’s mind refer to concepts nearer to unquiet psychological states, or happy-go-lucky interplay – transmits a sense of composure first and foremost, instantly giving us a strong idea of relation and control which is maintained throughout. Along its nine tracks, Mimmo’s deluxe soprano accents privilege expansion, distension and weightlessness to mutter-and-warble fiber bundling, whereas Levin’s wealthy timbral extent delivers the cello from the requirements of a fixed role while expressing a multitude of heart-to-heart beliefs. The results can occasionally float halfway through genuine innovation and conventional skillfulness, but the earnest sprightliness propagating from these breezy confabulations is palpable.