Review: Fabrizio La Piana - Almond and Coffee



Guitarist Fabrizio La Piana likes to explore what rests at the heart of an idea and what makes things tick. That's essentially the notion that waters the roots of his debut album "Almond and Coffee," which beside the guitarist also features drummer Niels Voskuil and bassist Bernhard Hollinger. It's a thought process that gives La Piana grounding while also freeing him from the constraints of a more rigid conceptual frame. 

The three numbers that open up this program couldn't be more different. First there's the funk-inspired “Funky Song," a buoyant thriller in three with sharp-witted interplay and dynamic solo statements. Then the placid title track and the jam rock of "Forte" follow. Each of those tracks carry and present musical merits endemic to different realms. But when taken together, they make for a broad and restless statement. La Piana clearly doesn't want to stay in one place for very long. 

The music that comprises the rest of the album confirms that thought. For starters there's the dangerous fusion of “Pulice" and “50-50.” That leads to the short instrumental variation of “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” titled “Interlude.” Then it all comes to an end with a glistening “Rokin.”


Each member of the trio that brings this music to life does some heavy lifting in different departments. La Piana is the anchor and the chief designer, having created each track to speak on its own terms and work as a particular complement to what precedes and/or follows it. It's a team that has everything covered. Together, they carry out La Piana’s mission of foundational exploration while shedding light on his compositional gifts.

For more information and to purchase "Almond and Coffee," visit Fabrizio La Piana's website.
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