Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

360

Bobo Stenson Trio: Cantando

Dan McClenaghan By

Sign in to view read count


Fans of the piano trio have been listening hard and wide for a follow-up to the "Holy Grails": Bill Evans' Live at the Village Vanguard (Riverside Records, 1961) and Waltz for Debby (Riverside Records, 1961). Those sets introduced democracy to the group's three-way interplay, making drums and bass near-equal partners with the piano. Swedish pianist Bobo Stenson's later trios have come close to that elusive perfection. Serenity (ECM Records, 2000) and Goodbye (ECM Records, 2006) both achieve rare heights of cohesion, trio simpatico and subtle, breathtaking beauty. Serenity, a double disc with bassist Anders Jormin and drummer Jon Christensen, is often cited as Stenson's finest recorded outing, while Goodbye, with Paul Motian—who sat in the drummer's chair in the previously mentioned legendary Bill Evans live dates—is consistently praised as a top-notch outing.



The differences between Cantando and Stenson's previous two discs are of small degrees, but they add up to make it his finest trio recording.



With Cantando, Stenson maintains his longstanding musical relationship with Jormin, and debuts Jon Falt, his touring drummer of the past few years. The result is more of the same trademark trio sound: delicate beauty and understatement, drifting melodies and three-way telepathy, combined with Stenson's supple touch and somewhat brainy, but always accessible approach.



Serenity was aptly named; much of Stenson's work has a serene, sedate quality about it. Whether it's the inclusion of drummer Fait or just a natural evolution of Stenson's musical vision, Cantando is a livelier outing. Falt is a drummer given more to direct statement than either of his two predecessors; he is more of a percussionist as opposed to a colorist wielding brushes dipped in quiet pastels, and he gives the sound more bounce, more pep.



Song selection also factors into the set's success, with Astor Piazzolla's "Chiquilin de Bachin" injecting some zest, and Don Cherry's "Don's Kora Song" pulling the sound toward a world music vibe, while Ornette Coleman's "A Fixed Goal" sticks some thorns and odd angles into the proceedings. "Pages," a fourteen minute spontaneous composition, was put together—Teo Macero/Miles Davis style—from different group improvisations, and showcases the in-the-moment rapport and spontaneity of the trio.



Expectations were high after Serenity and Goodbye, but Stenson's trio has topped them with Cantando, the pianist's best outing and very nearly that Holy Grail.

Track Listing: Olivia; Song of Ruth; Wooden Church; M; Chiquilin de Bachin; Pages; Don's Corapiece; A Fixed Goal; Love I've Found You; Liebesode; Song of Ruth

Personnel: Bobo Stenson: piano; Anders Jormin: double-bass; Jon Fält: drums.

Title: Cantando | Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: ECM Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and you'll support us in the process. Learn how.

Album Reviews
Discography
Album Reviews
Podcast
Album Reviews
Live Reviews
Profiles
Interviews
Album Reviews
Read more articles
War Orphans

War Orphans

ECM Records
2019

buy
Indicum

Indicum

ECM Records
2012

buy
Cantando

Cantando

ECM Records
2008

buy
Goodbye

Goodbye

ECM Records
2006

buy
Goodbye

Goodbye

ECM Records
2005

buy

Related Articles

Read Higher Album Reviews
Higher
By Tyran Grillo
May 26, 2019
Read The Unlonely Raindancer Album Reviews
The Unlonely Raindancer
By Matt Parker
May 26, 2019
Read Pyramid Scheme Album Reviews
Pyramid Scheme
By Mark Sullivan
May 26, 2019
Read Mosaismic Album Reviews
Mosaismic
By Mike Jurkovic
May 26, 2019
Read Caldera / Sky Islands Album Reviews
Caldera / Sky Islands
By Jakob Baekgaard
May 25, 2019
Read Baby, Please Come Home Album Reviews
Baby, Please Come Home
By Doug Collette
May 25, 2019
Read Reckless Heart Album Reviews
Reckless Heart
By Doug Collette
May 25, 2019