2019 / Gabriele Saro
Review by Kathy Parsons
SensationS is a piano/violin/cello trio album (with a few piano solos) of original compositions by Italian composer and multi-instrumentalist Gabriele Saro. The fifteen tracks feature Saro on violin, Andrea del Piccolo on piano and Francesco Pinosa on cello, and is the fourth album to date by this impressive and expressive trio of musicians. Also a pianist, organist and singer, Saro has earned a wide range of awards for his music, which spans a variety of musical genres. I don’t like to categorize anyone’s music, but for the sake of clarity, I would classify SensationS as contemporary classical. Some of the pieces are quiet and reflective and some are more energetic - a very pleasing and satisfying listening experience! All fifteen pieces have one-word titles that describe a mood or sensation but leave plenty of room for the listener to interpret the meaning of the music. It is interesting to note that Saro has spent much of his life working in and studying the sciences as well as music and has a passion for soundtrack music - both creating it and listening to it!
SensationS opens with “Morrow,” a dreamy, bittersweet piece that begins as a piano solo with the other two instruments entering at about the halfway point - a lovely way to start! “Stilness” (sic) also begins with the piano, but this time as a shorter intro before the strings join in. As the title implies, the music is gently flowing and very peaceful, but is still very expressive. “Merriment,” a piano solo, is a favorite although the title surprised me since it is a bit on the dark side and quite dramatic. I love the passion that flows throughout this piece as well as the beauty of the music. “Contrasts” is another favorite and this time the title really fits as it expresses a wide range of emotions and musical styles - some bold and lively and some much quieter and more subdued. The strings are especially nice on this one! “Regrets,” another piano solo, is very soulful and from the heart - elegant yet deeply emotional. The powerful “Accord” is a story told in three movements. The first has a big cinematic sweep, the second is much quieter and more melancholy, and the third returns to the drama of the first, fading away at the end unresolved. “Torments” is an almost seven-minute piano solo that really gives del Piccolo a chance to demonstrate his emotional range at the piano - a very powerful and affecting performance! “Nostalgia” usually makes me think of fond memories and maybe wishing to be able to go back in time, but this piece expresses feelings of darkness and perhaps tragedy, not just longing for the past. Saro’s violin all but bleeds in this deeply emotional piece - another favorite. “Delicacy” gently soothes as it unfolds, not unlike a warm musical hug. “Serenity” brings the album to a close with a piece that seems to express a mixture of triumph and peaceful calm.
So, if you are looking for some new instrumental music that leans toward the classical side, SensationS is a very nice choice! It is available from Amazon, iTunes/Apple Music and many streaming sites.
November 7, 2019