Home is the name of the Italian pianist and composer Nico Pistolesi’s second self-released album. It is a much needed personal statement for the artist; a moment and a place of comfort as well as an opportunity for cathartic music, introspective research and musical growth. With a departure and a return, Home is a journey composed of twelve pieces that expose a range of mixed emotions and musical atmospheres.
There is an intention of simplicity and directness of musical speech in Home. A way for Pistolesi to communicate his emotions in the most transparent manner, through refined — and in the case of “Rainy Day by the Sea”, almost romantic —, descriptive — “Spiral Dance” or “Skydiver”— and repetitive — “Water’s Memory” — musical motifs. Through an association with the twelve months of the year, Pistolesi expresses a sort of nostalgia — “Summer” — and melancholy — “One Life More”, and portraits memories of childhood and youth — “Mothers and Fathers”.
There is also a natural element that comes out of Home, what would be perceived as perhaps personality traits. It musically translates as what could be considered as jazz inflections, whether in the interpretation of the melodies — through grace notes and chromaticism in “The Door Is Open”, rhythmic aspects such as the waltzy “Ghost’ Dance” or the harmonic approach and the cool jazz of “Young As a Child”.
Home is definitely an opportunity for the composer to tell a musical story — perhaps even a journey — from its opening piece “We Believe” to the return to a safe place, of warmth and comfort with “Home Again”.
I find most of the pieces of Home to be very light in their approach, there is no fussing around and simply the statement of where Pistolesi is at. The composer approaches his music like one would approach the writing of a story, and it seems that it is enough for the listener to simply enjoy the pieces as they are presented. It is enjoyable after the hectic year that has been 2020 to find a project that although intense in its intentions shines through its simplicity.