Steve Howe Trio: Travelling (2010)
Drummer Dylan Howe, Steve's son, and organist Ross Stanley complete the trio. Both players have solid reputations of their own, and they are central to this album's success, whether they are setting up strong grooves to underpin Howe's guitar or taking lead roles themselves. Howe plays his trademark Gibson ES175 guitar with few if any additional effects, giving a clear, pure, tone to his sound throughout the album.
Howe's decision to incorporate Yes tunes into the trio's repertoire lends a pleasing variety to the album. Tunes such as "Siberian Khatru" sit surprisingly well next to jazz numbers like Jimmy Smith's "Blue Bash" and Burrell's "Kenny's Sound." Of Howe's later solo compositions, "Momenta" is particularly effective, acting as something of a showcase for all three musicians.
Travelling includes live versions of ten of the tunes from the Trio's first album, The Haunted Melody (HoweSound, 2008). The live tracks stay faithful to the arrangements on The Haunted Melody but are imbued with greater warmth than the studio versions. This is due in part to the inclusion of audience soundsapplause, whistles and cheers punctuate the albumbut it's also thanks to the excellent production work, especially the concert recordings by Ric French and Dave Wilkerson.
Travelling is an immediately accessible album. The selection of tunes avoids the clichéd American Songbook choices, and the reworking of classic Yes tunes enables them to blend together with the more overtly jazz compositions. The result is a fascinating mix that highlights the instrumental combination and talents of The Steve Howe Trio.
Track Listing: Blue Bash; Dream River; Travelin'; The Haunted Melody; Tune Up; Siberian Khatru; Mood for a Day; He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother; Momenta; Kenny's Sound; Laughing With Larry; Close to the Edge.
Personnel: Steve Howe: guitar; Ross Stanley: organ; Dylan Howe: drums.
Record Label: HoweSound