Marian McPartland: Twilight World (2008)
Cooled-out ballads permeate the set. Highlights include the title track, which faintly recalls "On Green Dolphin Street," as well as McPartland's dreamy, solo rendition of Burt Bacharach's "Alfie." At this point, the album might seem to be "Jazz for Sleepy Time," but the pianist then throws a curve ball in the form of a couple of Ornette Coleman covers. Whoa. Who knew this lady could still serve up 'modal pie'? "Turn Around" starts out accessibly enough, but soon turns into a syncopated, atonal exploration once the theme has been stated. There's hardly a theme to be found in "Lonely Woman," which features some nice interplay between the pianist and Mazzaroppi, who recalls Mingus at his feistiest.
With this album, McPartland earns her "years young" descriptionthis in no way serves an excuse to say "Oh, look...she can still play, but let me seek out her older stuff to catch her in her prime." On the contrary, she sounds like she's there right now. Twilight World offers both beautiful and challenging music, proving that McPartland's dedication to her craft (along with her uncanny talent) has kept her at the top of her game.
Track Listing: Twilight World; The Days Of Love; Turn Around; Close Enough For Love; How Deep Is The Ocean; Alfie; Lonely Woman; Blue In Green; Afternoon In Paris; Stranger In A Dream; Blackberry Winter.
Personnel: Marian McPartland: piano; Gary Masaroppi: bass; Glen Davis: drums.
Record Label: Concord Music Group