“Between Earth and Heaven” is the latest album by Aurelio Canonici, a world-famous orchestra conductor and composer. Featuring outstanding musicians like Paola Biondi and Debora Brunialti at the pianos, the Mascoulisse Quartet at trombones, and Maurizio Ben Omar at percussions, Between Earth and Heaven is a musical journey that takes the listener to a world that borders between sleep and wakefulness, in a dreamlike experience that skilfully blends together minimalism and a soundtrack style, with hints of jazz and educated contemporary music. Canonici has composed seven music frescos – stepping into this magic world painted by him is like following Lewis Carroll’s Alice through the looking-glass, along a path surrounded by charming sounds and spells that really let us catch a glimpse of that thin line of shadow that connects the Earth to Heaven. The first track, Possa io Essere, introduces us to the entire album. It is one of the most structured tracks and the longest one: its 8 and a half minutes are meant to make us detach from and leave behind our day-to-day world, to be captured by a dreamy, melancholic mood. Masterfully outlined by the relentless intertwining of Biondi’s and Brunialti’s pianos, Possa io Essere awakens in the listener a sense of expectancy, thanks to the impalpable unsettling atmosphere that pervades it, just like when we linger in that blurry space between sleep and wakefulness. The first track of the suite is followed by Volo di Farfalle and My Wind, two short but intense tracks that lead the listener to the very core of the album – the long, complex Empedocle, l’Amore e lo Sfero and the energetic Golden Prayer. In the latter, the skilful phrasings by Biondi and Brunialti are accompanied by the imposing sounds of the Mascoulisse Quartet’s winds, which contribute to taking us to our “deepest and darkest cave”, at the heart of the music history Canonici has written in Between Earth and Heaven. The two final tracks gradually take us back to our ordinary world: the irreverent Inno Marziale and the soft, warm, and joyful Girasole let us slowly climb out of our deep dream, leading us back to our daily life and leaving us with the impression we have really taken a long journey far away, where the earth and the sky meet to form the visible and yet always unreachable line of the horizon.
Analogy Records, January 2017