When Bill Evans emerged in the 1950s, he represented a paradigm shift for the jazz piano trio. No longer a lead instrument supported by a rhythm section, Evans' more egalitarian approach to music-making allowed delineated soloists to engage in a more fully conversational context, with any instrument capable of pushing the music in a new direction at any moment. Half a century later, Evans' influence can still be felt, but there's been further development, stripping away individual virtuosity and leaving only the collective sound of the trio. It's a tougher approach with which to connect for those used to hearing ...read more
The piano trio--piano, bass and drums--can seem something of an anachronism in a time when musical artists make use of synthesizers, electronics, laptops and loops to craft their sounds. But scores of pianists still go to the acoustic trio format as one of their primary means of expression. In looking toward jazz veterans, Keith Jarrett and Ahmad Jamal come to mind. With a newer group of artists, it's possible to point to Bill Carrothers, Brad Mehldau, Greg Reitan, and so many more.Colin Vallon, born in 1980, is one of the newer generation of piano trio artists, rising to ...read more
Colin Vallon TrioRubin Museum of ArtNew York, NYMay 20, 2011 New York City's Rubin Museum houses a large collection of fine art from the Himalayans, much of it with religious symbolism. In partnership with the National Jazz Museum in Harlem, the museum has also become a home for a series of new jazz performances on Fridays by innovative artists both young and old. As part of this series, Swiss pianist Colin Vallon brought his trio to the Museum's beautiful downstairs stage on his first tour of the United States. Joining Vallon were longtime band ...read more
Colin Vallon Trio Rruga ECM Records 2011 As much as many artists have a clear idea of where they are and where they're going, there's no denying the value of a strong producer. Colin Vallon's first two trio discs--2004's Les Ombres, on the small Swiss NotsiNOISY label, and 2007's Ailleurs, on the more widely distributed Hatology label--both demonstrated plenty of promise, albeit in contexts where it seemed as though the young Swiss pianist was like a kid in a stylistic candy store. Vallon's classical background clearly informed the music, but so, too, did an ...read more
Meet Colin Vallon:After studying classical music for two years, Colin Vallon (born November 17 1980 in Lausanne) took classes with jazz pianist Marc Ueter at the age of fourteen. He enrolled at the Swiss Jazz School when he was 18, and studied with Silvano Bazan, William Evans Manuel Bærtsch and Bert Joris. In 1999, he founds the Colin Vallon Trio, which has played regularly ever since, in Switzerland and abroad ; in 2004 it released his debut-album Les Ombres. Ailleurs, the second album of the Colin Vallon Trio, with Patrice Moret on double-bass and Samuel Rohrer on drums, ...read more
The very fine Dimensions Live is the second release from the band led by bassist Daniel Schläppi, which contains saxophonist Jürg Bucher and pianist Colin Vallon, the first simply named Dimensions (Brambus, 2003). Schläppi has also released Forces (Catwalk, 2007) on which he joined forces with Vallon, trombonist Nils Wogram, and teamed up with guitarist Tomas Sauter on the delightful Indian Summer (Catwalk, 2006). This double CD release was recorded at the Bird's Eye Jazz Club in Basel, Switzerland on two successive nights, and mixed and master by Jan Erik Kangshaug at the famous Rainbow Studio. The ...read more
The alternative jazz piano trio vibe hits rather poignantly during the start of the opening piece on Ailleurs, Le Paradis Perdu. With dense bells, cymbals, prepared piano treatments and an ethereal world music sound, you might guess that the Colin Vallon Trio is up to something rather special. The musicians instill budding movements and regal choruses into a set where twelve interrelated works also surface as noticeably disparate musical statements.
The action amid a quasi-freeform and dirge-like spiritual passage during Swing Low provides but a few of the many highlights here, where the band merely straddles the avant-garde ...read more
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