Valentin Ceccaldi’s Bonbon Flamme © Rémi Angéli
On the opening day, French cellist Valentin Ceccaldi presents his new project Bonbon Flamme at the Quasimodo – a wild mixture of progressive rock and jazz that is playful and dedicated to experimentation with breathless energy.
(FR, IT, BE, PT)
Like his older brother, violinist Theo, Valentin Ceccaldi got his start playing drums before gravitating to the cello. Yet while he has settled on a single instrument, his music continues to convey a child-like restlessness, moving from one idea to the next with breathless energy and good-natured chaos. Over the last decade, he has worked with an expanding number of collaborators—including the legendary French bassist Joëlle Leándre and Berlin guitarist Ronny Graupe—which seems to have prepared him for the wild sounds he has been creating with his latest project, Bonbon Flamme. On the quartet’s recent debut he encourages his nimble European bandmates—Portuguese guitarist Luis Lopes, French drummer Étienne Ziemniak, and Belgian keyboardist Fulco Ottervanger—to go for broke within a wildly eclectic, high-energy set of group improvisations. In the past, Ceccaldi has celebrated the music of King Crimson, and while there’s a clear taste of progressive rock virtuosity within Bonbon Flamme, it never gets in the way of a delightfully anarchic sense of freedom. The quartet mashes up various traditions in a Bacchanalian frenzy, but they reveal a remarkable unity and imagination no matter how far out things can get.
Valentin Ceccaldi – cello
Francesco Pastacaldi – drums
Fulco Ottervanger – piano, keys, vocals
Luis Lopes – guitar