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Martin Bejerano: Evolution/Revolution (2007)

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Martin Bejerano: Evolution/Revolution How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

Pianist Martin Bejerano has played with an impressive list of musicians, including Kenny Garrett, James Moody and Jimmy Heath. Roy Haynes and Russell Malone have him in their bands. Evolution/Revolution is Bejerano's first CD as leader, and it is easy to see why he has found wide favor.



Bejerano crystallizes his ideas succinctly, and tempers his drive with a clear vision. His harmonic strengths serve him well. He can also write a pretty good tune. Four are included here along with takes on Miles Davis, Bud Powell and Thelonious Monk.



Blues Evolution, a lilting tune with a classical air imbuing it, is the perfect opener. It shows his skills at settling into a fast groove and manipulating it. His fleet-fingered excursions soak into the melody and then take it out in a delightful flow. He does rein it in a bit without any ruffles before he gets back with a run of sparkling notes. He bookends the CD with "Blues Revolution, completing his journey with the blues running like a river through the land of bop.



Bejerano shows his playful side as he interprets "Monk's Dream with a sly sense of humor. There are constant shifts and breaks in the linearity as he jumps into a whirling groove, adding a whiff of a Middle Eastern melody and showing that he is no slouch with his imagination, as he pushes the song along with well-defined direction.



Bejerano convincingly proves that he is adept at conveying emotion on a slower tune as he essays "You Don't Know What Love Is with a delicate touch and cool lyricism. He never strays far from the core, content to add soft shades and a warm glow.



It would be amiss not to mention drummer Ludwig Afonso and bassist Edward Perez, who work in close consonance with Bejerano, helping give each tune a distinct character.

Track Listing: Blues Evolution; Lover Man; Cubano Arrepentido; You Dont Know What Love Is; Solar; Truth & Illusions; Bouncing With Bud; Monks Dream; Blues Revolution.

Personnel: Martin Bejerano: piano; Edward Perez: bass; Ludwig Afonso: drums.

Record Label: Reservoir Music

Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


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