Jazz, November 2020

hfnalbum.pngChick Corea
Chick Corea Plays
Concord Jazz CJA00284 (two discs); 3LPs: CJA00287

Like the trio albums Trilogy and Trilogy 2, this set of live solo performances was selected from 'a few recent concerts' at unspecified venues. Corea isn't the first jazz pianist to dip into Mozart or Chopin, but he takes on Scarlatti and Scriabin too, juxtaposing them with Gershwin and Kern, Jobim, Bill Evans, Monk and Stevie Wonder. He communes with his audience, talks them through his choices, improvises musical portraits and invites volunteers to duet with him. Finally, Corea plays Corea, with some of the Children's Songs that first appeared in the 1980s. 'I view all music as happening right now', Corea says, as he disarmingly claims the whole of western (and other) music as his lineage. Maybe he's entitled. SH


Space Sailors
Jazzland 377 927 8 (CD and LP)

Norwegian keyboard wiz and composer Bugge Wesseltoft is the producer of countless albums on his Jazzland label, founded in 1996. But he's been more visible as a jazz pianist since he formed Rymden (meaning 'space') with bassist Dan Berglund and drummer Magnus Öström, who'd been two-thirds of the late Esbjorn Svensson's e.s.t. Now this super-trio follows up last year's Reflections And Odysseys with a new intergalactic journey. Wesseltoft sparkles especially on Rhodes while Berglund offers electric and acoustic virtuosity plus other-worldly effects. Öström impresses with speed, dynamics and sheer power, to make this an innovative and gripping album. SH


Blue Note 0893738; LP: 0893740

Here's the debut of a multi-national band led by Canadian pianist Renee Rosnes, the music all written or arranged by its members. Drummer Allison Miller kicks off with the driving title track, Rosnes gives a nod to Fučík in 'Big Top' and clarinettist Anat Cohen looks to Chopin in 'Nocturno'. Trumpeter Ingrid Jensen, saxist Melissa Aldana and bassist Noriko Ueda contribute their themes too, while vocalist Cecile McLorin Salvant is sublime in Stevie Wonder's 'If It's Magic'. As Rosnes says, 'It's only a matter of time, before witnessing a band of women playing together – in terms of gender – will be unremarkable'. And this band gets better with each hearing. SH


Ubuntu Music UBU0063

Playing together regularly as a horn section, trombonist Trevor Mires, trumpeter Ryan Quigley and saxophonist Paul Booth discovered that they'd all previously spent a lot of time in earlier years touring and recording in salsa, boogaloo and merengue bands, and they all loved Latin jazz. So they combined their talents and their initials to form TRYPL, adding pianist Alex Wilson, bassist Dimitris Christopoulos, drummers Tristan Banks and Davide Giovannini, and percussionist Edwin Sanz. For this debut album, recorded at Steve Winwood's Wincraft studio, they put together nine original pieces along with Osvaldo Farrés' 'Tres Palabras'. Non-stop enjoyment. SH