How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.
Leslie Pintchik is a newer face on the jazz scene and Quartets is a respectable contribution that keeps in tide with her growing reputation.
Pintchik's approach to jazz does not rely on flashy lines or complex chordal movement like many of her peers; instead, it focuses on strong improvised material backed by a solid group of musicians who both complement her and add their own voice when the time comes for them to solo. Quartets is no exception to her refreshingly subtle style.
Understated though it may be, Quartets never lacks the ability to challenge the musical ear. On the well-known tune "Too Close for Comfort, Pintchik chooses to approach the melody with alternating Brazilian rhythms, which makes for an upbeat and original rendition. Scott Hardy's bass solo on this track is melodically pleasing and eases into a delightful, but unfortunately, short percussion battle between drummers Mark Dodge and Satoshi Takeishi. "Private Moment pleases the ear with Pintchik's simple melodic lines combined with clever chord changes. The melody is played beautifully by Steve Wilson on soprano sax and features a simple, yet sophisticated solo by the leader.
Quartets is a soothingly romantic album in a sea of instant gratification pianists. It is nice to take some time to get to know the music without the rush of a climax. The result is a beautifully performed statement with the delicate sophistication of a love story.
Track Listing: Happy Days Are Here Again; Too Close For Comfort; A Simpler Time; Not So Fast; Over Easy; Private Moment; Fugu; Small Pleasures; Somewhere/Berimbau.
Personnel: Leslie Pintchik: piano; Scott Hardy: bass; Mark Dodge: drums; Satoshi Takeishi: percussion (1-3, 7, 9); Steve Wilson: alto and soprano saxes (4-6, 8).