Gianni Cresci is an Italian designer and composer. He studied musicology, semiotics, harmony and counterpoint at the University of Bologna (Italy). He has written music for theatre, ballets and video productions. Cresci’s latest classical music release is “Il terzo canto della noce”, an album containing 14 tracks, each playing out like chapters of a fairytale put to music. This mood and tones easily lends itself to the connotations of an epic and wondrous fantasy-movie soundtrack.

Gianni Cresci
Gianni Cresci

This music evokes both emotions and images of waking up in the light of spring, and then being lost in a dark and foreboding magical forest where anything can happen. You can just enjoy the music and let your imagination soar along with the storyline, which you can deduce from the track titles, or you can let the music take you into that trance-like state where you can access creative ideas and creative solutions to any problems – and maybe they will just dissolve of their own accord. Such is the power of the compositions and performances Gianni Cresci has put together on “Il terzo canto della noce”.

I have listened to the album several times over the past few days, with and without earphones, and I can find very little fault with the recording. The playing is of an extraordinary high quality, the instrumental solos are spectacularly well done and with great beauty of tone. The strings sing as strings should, the horns are magnificent, the important melody is faultless.

The album artwork by Matteo Vattani
The album artwork by Matteo Vattani

Cresci lets the music flow organically and there’s never the idea of deliberateness or irksome mannerisms. He never revels in the beauty of the music and his own musicianship, by overplaying or over dramatizing the arrangements. The playing is not beauty for the sake of beauty, but rather for the sake of the storyline. The recorded sound is very lively and sparkling, with well-rounded bass and all the instruments are clearly audible, without excessive reverb.

From the gentle opening track, “Nel chiarore, l’eco della notte” (loosely translated – In light, the echo of the nights) to the eventful, “Primo canto. La peripezia” then the swaying notes of “Il chiasso e le due strade” (The noise and the two roads), onto the contrasting, “Musici e guerrieri” (Musicians and warriors) and the epic final of “Terzo canto. Il ritorno”, the compositions and playing is characterful and manages to tell the story convincingly as Cresci’s soloist parts are prominent, displaying beauty and roundness of tone.

Also, Gianni Cresci’s modern classical compositions manage to capture that fragile and ethereal, fairytale quality, much needed to convince the listener of the storyline titles, while still maintaining an overall full and rich sound. I for one cannot find fault with “Il terzo canto della noce” and the sheer indulging beauty of the music, and while I’m fascinated by its fairytale theme, it’s purely Gianni Cresci’s music that I will be returning to more often for sheer listening pleasure!

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