02 You Must Believe In Spring
03 The Duke
04 Il Nostra Concerto
06 US 4
08 After The Love Has Gone
Enzo Zirrilli - Drums
Luca Boscadin - Guitar
Ross Stanley - Hammond B3
Jim Mullen - Guitar
Radio Londra is the brainchild of Italian drummer Enzo Zirilli responsible for an artistic exchange program introducing top UK musicians to Italian audiences, and vice versa. For this project he has paired the Maestro Jim Mullen with fellow Italian guitarist Luca Boscagin. Jim Mullen needs no introduction having been a mainstay of the UK music scene for decades. His status as an international giant of guitar is in disputable. Luca studied guitar in Verona influenced initially by Led Zeppelin, Genesis, King Crimson etc before coming across jazz artists such as Wes Montgomery, Herbie Hancock and many others. He has already recorded three albums as leader and appeared at numerous European festivals with artists such as Gianni Basso, Sonny Fortune, Mauro Negri, Larry Coryell, and John Abercrombie to name a few. Joining the two guitarists is the gifted pianist/organist Ross Stanley. Ross is one of the busiest musicians on the UK music scene. If you are yet to hear him play you don’t get out too much! … He is constantly in demand on the contemporary jazz scene and further afield and is a member of an expansive list of groups and bands. Finally Enzo Zirilli has made his mark on the UK music scene as a highly versatile drummer and has quickly established himself as a top rated musician. Born into a Sicilian family, he grew up in Turin moving to London in 2004. He has played in major festivals and jazz clubs around the world as well as recording with some of the greatest jazz, world music and pop artists such as Dado Moroni, Enrico Pieranunzi, Tom Harrell, Eddie Gomez, George Garzone, Bob Mintzer, James Moody, Gary Bartz, Charlie Mariano, Omar Lye Fook, Antonio Forcione and many more. The music is based round a traditional organ jazz trio, with the addition of the extra guitar. With such great musicians aboard the group is, of course, hard swinging and creative, playing material drawn from jazz standards with the odd curved ball such as the Rolling Stone’s 'Satisfaction' thrown in.
Radio Londra, to give this band and their debut album its proper title, is a sparkling quartet drawn from top British and Italian talent. Drummer-producer Enzo Zirilli grooves stylishly alongside Ross Stanley, a versatile organist who creates propulsive patterns and can take a scorching solo. And up front, outstanding and upstanding, are Glaswegian genius Jim Mullen and Luca Boscagin, a young gentleman from Verona.
It’s a tale of two guitarists, different in style but similar in eloquence. Their opening number, Tenderly, is normally a ballad but was taken medium-fast with half-choruses rotating between keys a minor-third apart, a neat device favoured by the late great Bill Evans. Mullen, who never uses a pick, was soon cooking at full temperature, his thumb-driven ideas full of humour and soulful logic.
A gifted “quoter”, he occasionally injects snatches of familiar song titles into his line. This irritates some listeners but properly done, it adds wit and vitality to the performance. Last night he flipped My Favourite Things, Take the ‘A’ Train and Eleanor Rigby from his data-bank, and why not? Dexter Gordon did it, Sonny Stitt did it, and Charlie Parker did it better than anybody.
Stardust, by Hoagy Carmichael — “a fine old Scottish name”, as Mullen observed — was beautifully voiced in chords by Boscagin before the group’s blazing set-closer, the old Stones hit Satisfaction, rearranged at a tempo that would rock the composers’ socks off. Tune into Radio Londra. It’s a hard-swinging unit that can hold its own in any company.
Jack Massarik, EVENING STANDARD