Tord Gustavsen trio, Opening, ECM ***

A long way from swinging a standard or dipping into the pages of the Great American Songbook, Norwegian pianist Tord Gustavsen has always delivered a sound apart. It's quiet, hushed, hugely tasteful with something of the discipline of a classical …

Published: 9 Apr 2022. Updated: 9 months.

A long way from swinging a standard or dipping into the pages of the Great American Songbook, Norwegian pianist Tord Gustavsen has always delivered a sound apart. It's quiet, hushed, hugely tasteful with something of the discipline of a classical atmosphere and a careful logical ramping up of emotion and an inner contemplative sense. Opening isn't very different from earlier works by Gustavsen. He dips into his own sound with ''new'' bassist Steinar Raknes and the trio's longstanding drummer Jarle Vespestad whose role really is to accompany decorously and best on brushes. Raknes breaks free sometimes to deliver some interesting solos say on 'Stream' and seems to suit the sound very well. An album that will delight Gustavsen's many fans because he continues to give us what we want: an oasis of a sound that is as much mindfulness as anything else. The Gustavsen trio are touring in the spring with a raft of UK and Ireland dates included on the itinerary. Dates are: 1 May – Bray Jazz Festival, Ireland; 17 May – Milton Keynes; 18 May – Turner Sims Southampton; 19 May – St George's, Bristol; 20 May – The Apex, Bury St. Edmunds; 21 May – Howard Assembly Room Leeds; 22 May – Triskel Arts Centre, Cork, Ireland.

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Cameron Graves, Live from the Seven Spheres, Artistry Music ***

A lap of honour celebratory live quartet version of some of Cameron Graves' earlier work here featuring reworkings of tracks heard on his albums Planetary Prince and the hard thrashing Seven. It's good fun but beware! You might suddenly be …

Published: 9 Apr 2022. Updated: 9 months.

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A lap of honour celebratory live quartet version of some of Cameron Graves' earlier work here featuring reworkings of tracks heard on his albums Planetary Prince and the hard thrashing Seven. It's good fun but beware! You might suddenly be channelling your inner heavy metal-loving teenage years. Keyboardist Graves, well known for his work with Kamasi Washington, has guitarist Colin Cook, bassist Max Gerl and drummer Mike Mitchell with him on the record and there are lots of bravura touches, chunky riffs, highwire act solos and plenty of volume. Judging by the audience applause they certainly lapped all this up.