Saturday, March 5, 2011

Bordel 1900 - Tango Factory

Humor. Joy. Creativity. Brilliant musicianship. You will find them all in today's featured video of Bordel 1900 performed by Tango Factory. Bordel 1900 is the first movement of the Histoire du tango series composed by Piazzolla in 1985 for flute and guitar. It is one of the ten most frequently performed of Piazzolla's works with nearly 200 versions of it appearing on YouTube over the past two years. Almost all of the performances are by duos, although not always flute and guitar, but there are a few large ensemble performances. None of those come remotely close to the arrangement and performance by the Tango Factory quartet in today's video.

Tango Factory consists of Marcelo Nisinman on bandoneĆ³n, Chen Halevi on clarinet, Matan Porat on piano and Winfried Holzenkamp on contrabass. These are all virtuoso (and very busy) musicians. They are one of the most talented set of musicians ever to converge on Piazzolla's music. Except for Halevi, all have some Piazzolla roots. Nisinman is a talented composer and I believe the arranger of Bordel 1900 here. He grew up in a household where Piazzolla rehearsed his quintet around the family piano. Porat, also a composer, was recently featured in this blog for his piano arrangements of Piazzolla. Holzenkamp spent a year in Buenos Aires studying tango with such tango bass players as Hector Console (a member of Piazzolla's quintet) and Daniel Buono from the Rudolfo Mederos quintet. I don't know where Halevi got his tango chops but the klezmer twinge and enthusiasm he brings to his work adds a real spark to the quartet. Note the way the group navigates the tempo changes and unusual accents - these guys are good.

This is the most enjoyable performance of Bordel 1900 I have ever seen. I wonder what they can do with the other three movements of the Histoire?

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