Pianist Robert Mitchell offers insight into a very particular musical place on The Glimpse: the world of solo, left hand only piano. The left hand: the hand responsible for the rhythm, the hand that keeps the beat, that lies in thrall to the melodic, excitable and exciting right hand. Why on earth would anyone want to play the piano using only the left hand? What a waste of half a keyboard and, indeed, half a pianist. Mitchell--a left hander himself--needs no more than 10 seconds of the improvised Amino" to shoot such ill-informed prejudices out of the sky. His left ...read more
Robert Mitchell's Panacea presents The Cusp, its third album, and debut release for Edition Records. This collection of ten highly arranged original compositions by Mitchell, combines complex rhythmic writing with contemporary vocal jazz. The recording is delivered with a squeaky-clean production sound that can only be a reflection of the leader's attention to detail, and a personal involvement at every level. Mitchell was certainly wearing his heart on his sleeve when writing this record--from his ensemble writing through to the string arrangements and lyrics. Panacea," the Greek goddess of medicine and healing, is a ...read more
The Greater Good was declared the Best Jazz Album of 2009" by influential British DJ Gilles Peterson. At a time when piano trios seem to be enjoying a resurgence such an accolade might be hard to live up to in the face of some stiff competition, but this album's combination of original tunes, inspired covers, and fine musicianship makes it a worthy award winner. Although pianist Robert Mitchell has been around the British jazz scene for some years, leading Panacea and working as a duo with violinist Omar Puente for example, this is his first trio album. ...read more
Robert Mitchell & Omar Puente St. Cyprian's Church London, England April 1, 2008
This unlikely duo of acoustic piano and electric violin allows Robert Mitchell and Omar Puente to stretch their considerable abilities beyond the confines of a conventional jazz group. Perhaps more unconventional was the venue, literally a Church of Jazz, tucked away near Baker Street in central London.
This was the perfect acoustic for such a performance. Mitchell and Puente played a variety of standards, originals and a couple of Spanish songs, on which the Cuban violinist also sang. A highlight was ...read more
Robert Mitchell Equinox F-IRE 2007
British pianist Robert Mitchell, yet another distinguished alumnus of bassist Gary Crosby's Tomorrow's Warriors development programme for young British jazz musicians, throws up many questions on his ambitious solo release Equinox. Performing alone is not unusual to Mitchell: as recently as 2004 he played opening recitals for saxophone luminaries Wayne Shorter and Branford Marsalis.
The launch gig for the new album took place on September 15, 2007. It was part of Lifting The Lid, a three-day festival celebrating modern solo piano, curated by Mitchell. Taking place at London's Pizza ...read more
The cultural trajectories of most musicians tend to be unidirectional. Sometimes they point south towards real or supposed roots and authenticities, sometimes north towards the European conservatoire, sometimes east and sometimes west. Rarely does the rocket travel in two directions simultaneously.
Robert Mitchell's vision, unusually, is omni-directional. He is as involved with African and South American musical traditions, especially their rhythmic heritages, as he is with post-Debussian European composition and harmony, and as concerned with the spirit as he is with the intellect. These particular bipolarities make for a distinctive and ambitious vision, and one which sits happily ...read more
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