The famous Portuguese writer Fernando Pessoa (through his heteronym Álvaro de Campos) wrote in “Triumphal Ode” (1914): «By the painful light of the factory’s huge electric lamps / I write in a fever. / I write gnashing my teeth, rabid for the beauty of all this, / For this beauty completely unknown to the ancients.»*
The mystery of music is endless. Especially when someone creates in real time and without any previous arrangements music with unrepeatable and timeless characteristics. This is what happened when Sicilian trombonist Salvoandrea Lucifora and Portuguese Luís Vicente (trumpet), Marcelo dos Reis (electric guitar) and João Valinho (drums) got together at Salão Brazil, a very special venue located in downtown Coimbra, just before the covid-19 pandemic turned our lives upside down.
Always searching for his own sound, Lucifora explores different micro-styles within the vast universe of improvised music. Opting again for electricity, dos Reis is an architect of structures, as if composing in a framework of free improvisation. Vicente's trumpet amazes by its multidimensional nature, taking different forms when reinforcing ideas or presenting disruptive proposals. A young drummer with a lot to say, Valinho has been gaining prominence in diverse contexts, which he marks with singular focus on detail.
In “Light Machina” we hear creative interactions between different musical personalities that strive for a common purpose without imposing or diluting themselves. The four musicians (plus the silence) indulge in crossed stimuli and action-reaction games, balancing mature complicities with the excitement of new relationships. Three improvised pieces, whose titles reflect real, if not bizarre, events, such as the rescue of a family of pigs at the entrance to a highway; a girl who claimed to have a “light machina” to meditate; and a “chanfana” (rustic old goat stew) dinner on a rainy night.
Different approaches are used to expand the possibilities of the instruments, without this being an end in itself, but a tool for building dynamics and atmospheres. The result is a constant discovery and something that fortunately cannot be categorized. They did not play gnashing their teeth, or perhaps they did; but “Light Machina”, in its strange beauty, is a triumph.
Lisbon, March 2021
* Translated by Richard Zenith
released April 2, 2021
João Valinho . drums
Luís Vicente . trumpet
Marcelo dos Reis . electric guitar
Salvoandrea Lucifora . trombone
Recorded live in concert by Miguel Serrão on 1st March 2020 at Salão Brazil in Coimbra.
Mix and Master by Marcelo dos Reis.
Band photo by Nuno Martins.
Liner Notes by António Branco.
All Music by Marcelo dos Reis, Luís Vicente, Salvoandrea Lucifora and João Valinho.
Cover Design by Witold Oleszak.
Executive Producers – Tomasz Konwent & Andrzej Nowak.
Special thanks to Andrzej Nowak, António Branco , Jazz ao Centro Clube, Miguel Serrão, Nuno Martins, Witold Oleszak and Tomasz Konwent.
Maciej Lewenstein, the author of the book "Polish Jazz Recordings and Beyond", is the patron of the Multikulti Project/ Spontaneous Music Tribune Series