Daily jazz blog, Marlbank

Pat Bianchi, Three ****

What a storming set is in store for you dear readers come release day on Friday with Three as US Hammond B3 organist Pat Bianchi, a protégé of the much missed Joey DeFrancesco and former playing partner of Pat Martino's, teams up to powerful …

Published: 7 Feb 2024. Updated: 4 months.

Trio Pic_Studio2

What a storming set is in store for you dear readers come release day on Friday with Three as US Hammond B3 organist Pat Bianchi, a protégé of the much missed Joey DeFrancesco and former playing partner of Pat Martino's, teams up to powerful effect with saxist Troy Roberts and inventive drummer Colin Stranahan. While the tunes ('Cheek to Cheek,' 'Love For Sale,' 'Stardust,' 'Dance Cadaverous' among them) are really familiar what the trio manage to do to them sounds fresh. Everyone knows how to take a tune for a walk. And in Roberts, known for his work with DeFrancesco and Van Morrison, Pat has a bravura front man who tackles everything head on. As good an organ trio record as I have heard in quite a while, check out a live version of 'Cheek to Cheek' from the trio above. SG. Out on 9 February

L-r in the photo: Troy Roberts, Pat Bianchi, Colin Stranahan

Tags: Reviews

John Surman, Words Unspoken, ECM *****

By now some six years since we have had a new ECM album by the iconic British saxophonist and bass clarinettist John Surman, who turns 80 later in 2024, Words Unspoken is a beautiful, resonant, quartet album that, like its predecessor, Invisible …

Published: 7 Feb 2024. Updated: 4 months.

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By now some six years since we have had a new ECM album by the iconic British saxophonist and bass clarinettist John Surman, who turns 80 later in 2024, Words Unspoken is a beautiful, resonant, quartet album that, like its predecessor, Invisible Threads, was recorded at the Rainbow in Oslo. American vibist Rob Waring who like Surman lives in Norway is once again in Surman's band but both are joined for the first time by British guitarist Rob Luft and by Norwegian drummer Thomas Strønen.

It's all very pared back and softly conveyed containing a pastoral, naturalistic feel shaped around robust motifs that are delicately unpeeled harmonically by Luft and Waring while Surman himself weaves weighty explorations around the themes with both a gravitas and a sense of grace and playfulness as active ingredients. Quite wonderful - and certainly up there with some of Surman's best work in a long and distinguished career. SG

Released on 16 February. The title track 'Words Unspoken' and 'Pebble Dance' are streaming

l-r in the photo: John Surman, Thomas Strønen, Rob Luft and Rob Waring