Super Mário – elegant Laginha track Short Shore is the pick of the early-2022 Edition label preview tracks

At last night's Edition label listening party on YouTube the xmas cracker in terms of a preview for early-2022 releases was easily the fantastic 'Short Shore' from Jangada (a word from the Portuguese that translates as ''raft''). This sweeping …

Published: 16 Dec 2021. Updated: 43 days.

At last night's Edition label listening party on YouTube the xmas cracker in terms of a preview for early-2022 releases was easily the fantastic 'Short Shore' from Jangada (a word from the Portuguese that translates as ''raft'').

This sweeping piano trio piece from the pianist Mário Laginha with double bassist Bernardo Moreira and drummer Alexandre Frazão was recorded in a Lisbon studio in the summer and weighs in just shy of nine minutes, ''weigh'' because there is a lot of authority and sheer heft to the direction and fulfilment of the piece.

It all begins slowly, just solo piano. Laginha sounds a little like the much-missed Bernardo Sassetti. You certainly get a heart on sleeve swell when a tipping point is reached. Moreira brings with him his own transitional melody very much in the Dan Berglund mould as Laginha pulls back to play an accompanying riff. Frazão doesn't have to do much initially although entering like breaking glass and comes into his own switching away from brushes later when Laginha begins the major improvisation of the piece. The style falls in the modern-mainstream domain. That means it's fairly melodic and not overtly modernistic although containing a progressive feel. There is certainly no short cut to cop-out sentimentality in the trio's approach. And there is little chromaticism but chordally as it continues the changes become that bit more interesting and not at all sugary still steering within strict modal parameters. The challenge and cryptic puzzle to be resolved is in how the trio negotiate the increasing heat of the piece without bringing it prematurely to the boil.

Look for Jangada – which has the 17-minute epic 'The Stone Raft (A jangada de pedra): Lowlands, Raft, Crossroads, South' as its main statement – in February. Mário Laginha, above. Photo: press

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Trichotomy, Momentary Control, Own label ****

Australia's world class piano trio Trichotomy here with additional vibes and marimba added on a Sean Foran composition. Foran is a melodicist much swayed in the past by Esbjörn Svensson but very much his own person. The duoplay here with vibist …

Published: 16 Dec 2021. Updated: 43 days.

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trichotomy

Australia's world class piano trio Trichotomy here with additional vibes and marimba added on a Sean Foran composition. Foran is a melodicist much swayed in the past by Esbjörn Svensson but very much his own person. The duoplay here with vibist Nozomi Omote adds an extra layer of enchantment without taking away from the essential secret ingredient of rapport that the trio have long since developed. Drummer John Parker is an alert listening presence but Foran never gets the chance to fully let go, it's not that kind of full-pelt assault on the senses. More subtle is the name of the game and bassist Samuel Vincent's arco part when it comes is even a surprise. Singles can get lost in the sea of music out there but this certainly sends a message in a bottle to remind us all over again that Trichotomy however the vibes describe them are at the core of it all that bit special.

The track is available via Bandcamp