Kurt Rosenwinkel and Geri Allen, A Lovesome Thing, Motéma *****

It's such a loss to the music that Geri Allen is no longer with us - the pianist died in 2017. Five years earlier she had recorded this newly issued duo performance - the only time they played together - with guitarist Kurt Rosenwinkel at the …

Published: 24 Nov 2023. Updated: 3 months.

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It's such a loss to the music that Geri Allen is no longer with us - the pianist died in 2017. Five years earlier she had recorded this newly issued duo performance - the only time they played together - with guitarist Kurt Rosenwinkel at the Paris Philharmonie. There's a grand sweep of jazz past and present coming together here. Standards by Billy Strayhorn, Gershwin (in an arrangement by Herbie Hancock of 'Embraceable You'), Thelonious Monk and originals of Geri's and Kurt's are all in the blend. Geri original 'Open Handed Reach' is perhaps the pick of the whole album - in her writing you get, as you do with the writing of Wayne Shorter, a certain mystical magic and resource. What a gift from the past to hear this today - a unique document and welcome reminder again of the very special sound of Geri Allen speaking to us so personally once again. Geri Allen and Kurt Rosenwinkel, photo: Motéma

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Jasper Høiby, Three Elements: Earthness, Edition ****

With exciting new UK pianist Noah Stoneman - marvellous this year on his debut Anyone's Quiet: Let It Rain To You - and lively drummer Luca Caruso on board, bass don Jasper Høiby is back here with his new piano trio 3 Elements. Beginning in a …

Published: 24 Nov 2023. Updated: 3 months.

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With exciting new UK pianist Noah Stoneman - marvellous this year on his debut Anyone's Quiet: Let It Rain To You - and lively drummer Luca Caruso on board, bass don Jasper Høiby is back here with his new piano trio 3 Elements. Beginning in a wildly expressive piano-led foray on 'Undaunted' the tunes include Planet B's 'Earthness' from 'What It Means To Be Human'. With Høiby there is always a lot of dynamic power percolating up from the bass and a metrically challenging approach that allows a small group to seem larger than it is. Lots of the tunes are quite brief so go instead for the longer treatments like the ballad 'Never Forgotten,' 'Her Deepness' led off by Caruso and 'Her Love Song' for the fullest expression of what this fine band are all about. Høiby's best album since his Phronesis days? Definitely.