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New Tango Visionup

1 -- CD Review
2 -- Merkin Hall Concert Review
3 -- Three brilliant artists on top of their maturity

1 -- CD Review

01 -- Libertango
02 -- Verano Porteño
03 -- El Firulete
04 -- Oblivion
05 -- Buenos Aires Hora Cero
06 -- Romanza & Baiao

07 -- Tango de los Cuadros
08 -- Novitango
09 -- Violentango
10 -- Gris de Ausencia
11 -- Bordel 1900
12 -- Anhelo y Misterio

This CD is a collection of mostly Astor Piazzolla contemporary, Argentine tango concert pieces, plus music by Daniel Binelli, Nestor Marconi, Carlos Aguirre, and Mariano Mores. For purposes of this review, I will focus on the Piazzolla interpretations, so dramatic and infused with pathos, passion, and power. In fact, these are some of the most mesmerizing arrangements of Piazzolla’s refined music ever heard. Argentinean Daniel Binelli, a former member of Piazzolla’s Sextet, plays bandoneón from the gut, with every ounce of nerve and emotion he can muster. Uruguayan Pianist, Polly Ferman is a longtime musical partner of Binelli and has mastered his timing. (See an interview of Binelli and Ferman). Argentinean guitarist, Eduardo Isaac is a novel and exciting addition to this renowned duo. It was almost impossible to feature just four tracks, and Binelli’s compositions are edgy and Piazzolla-plus.

Notable tracks:

#2 – Verano Porteño
– Composed by Astor Piazzolla.

Binelli plays a long, atonal, and dramatic introduction to this “Summer” season portion of Piazzolla’s “Four Seasons”. After two minutes, Ferman joins on piano, and the two play as one. The electricity of the track is palpable.

#4 – Oblivion
– Composed by Astor Piazzolla.

This searing piano solo exudes sadness and isolation in a most gripping way. Ferman brings this renowned work to maximum potential, and one must listen to this track twice; once for the sheer piano technique and once for its impassioned eloquence.

#5 – Buenos Aires Hora Cero
– Composed by Astor Piazzolla.

The trio performs this surreal and moody composition after Binelli’s endless and soulful introduction. Isaac, on guitar, fills quiet passages with waterfalls of scintillating strings. The edgy surrealness builds to imagery of busy Buenos Aires, perhaps a tango club in the early morning hours.

#8 – Novitango
– Composed by Astor Piazzolla.

The duo of Ferman and Isaac seamlessly switch leads, as meandering melodies abound. Isaac, new to the New York tango concert scene, should be heard more, for his unique and enchanting improvisations.

BONUS - #12 - Anhelo y Misterio
- Composed by Daniel Binelli.

Performed by the trio, Ferman takes an over one minute piano lead, building to Binelli’s bandoneón entrance with repetitive chords. Soon, frenzied, soulful music finds room for Isaac’s guitar embellishments, but, clearly, the composer drives the mood in elongated, gripping chords. Eduardo Isaac intermittently engages the listener, but, when Ferman and Binelli join in duo, there are rapidly building tempos and volume, contrasting to the earlier, elongated motifs. A “milonga” (fast tango) develops, just before the trio’s finale flash.


2 -- Merkin Hall Concert Review

Tonight’s repertory spans traditional Argentine tangos to those of edgy contemporary motif. The trio is celebrating the release of its new cd, New Tango Vision, with 12 tracks, and tonight’s concert includes all 12 songs, plus Piazzolla’s famed Adios Nonino, written at the time of the loss of his father. Binelli, Argentinean bandoneonist, has toured the world, first as part of Piazzolla’s sextet and Osvaldo Pugliese’s orchestra, and later as bandoneón soloist, theatrical music director, orchestra leader, member of tango trios/quartets, accompanist to modern dance, and much more. Polly Ferman, Uruguayan pianist, also touring the globe, interprets Latin American musical genres, plays solo, duo, and trio contemporary tango concerts, accompanies modern dance, performs with classical music and tango orchestras, and directs PAMAR, a non-profit arts organization. Eduardo Isaac, Argentinean guitarist, is considered a new generation guitarist and performs at international festivals.

The compelling program began with two Piazzolla works, the first with a slow bandoneón introduction and skillful guitar and piano, ending in atonal angst, and the second with Isaac playing the theme, during a guitar, piano, bandoneón sequence. The Mores work included a piano-guitar duet and then the guitar dancing through this rapid, engaging “milonga” (a fast tango). Ferman played solo piano for an impassioned interpretation of Oblivion, yet without overstating the emotion or edge that this work can inspire. A Binelli-Ferman duet gave electric energy to Tango de los Cuadros, with its staccato sequences. Binelli’s other presented composition, Anhelo y Misterio, was announced as a “candombe” from Uruguay.

In fact, Polly Ferman, onstage host of this evening’s event, was warm, humorous, glamorous, and informative at numerous intervals throughout the program. Aguirre’s guitar solo was the first of three showcases for Eduardo Isaac, and this new figure to New York stages was captivating and talented. Romanza & Baiao had contemporary dance qualities. Novitango, by Piazzolla, had Isaac and Ferman in duet, and it was elegantly evocative of Buenos Aires, while Violentango, another guitar-piano duet, included rapid, racing passages. Binelli’s solo, the Marconi work, found the bandoneonist in his signature elongated, endless chords, with the instrument stretched floor to arms’ height. Gris de Ausencia was replete with mournful moodiness.

Binelli and Ferman teamed for Verano Porteño, the Summer section of Piazzolla’s “Four Seasons”, and their performance chemistry enhanced this musical conversation. Adios Nonino, the closing work, was performed by the trio and featured Ferman’s extensive and energized piano solo. Kudos to Daniel Binelli, Polly Ferman, and Eduardo Isaac for this rapturous concert of mainly contemporary tango.


3 -- Three brilliant artists on top of their maturity


“As the title of the CD expresses, we get a new vision of Tango in these wonderful arrangements. We hear a form of Tango-chamber music: this is a very intimate and filigree way to show this style of music.”

Barbara Martig-Tüller at



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