161

Alex Riel: Celebration

Jack Bowers By

Sign in to view read count
A thoughtfully planned, beautifully recorded, generously timed and wonderfully played trio session led by drummer Alex Riel and showcasing the prodigious talents of pianist Kenny Werner and bassist Jesper Lundgaard, so exhilarating that this reviewer was reminded from time to time of the classic Marian McPartland Hickory House trio from the '50s with bassist Bill Crow and drummer Joe Morello. After opening the concert date at the Copenhagen Jazz House with three spellbinding standards, Riel and Company elucidate Horace Silver's "Peace" and Thad Jones's "A Child Is Born," return to the tried-and-true American Songbook for two more masterpieces, and Werner wraps things up with an unaccompanied reading of J.S. Bach's "Siciliana." Werner, who doesn't habitually linger long in this groove, shows a lyrical side that is consistently radiant and charming, not to mention shrewd and resourceful. He really should do this more often. As for Riel and Lundgaard, they are twin pillars of tastefulness and talent, thoroughly at ease in every situation and always ready to maximize the trio's rhythmic impact. Listen, for example, to their understated mastery on "Green Dolphin Street" — or anywhere else, for that matter. Like Werner, Lundgaard is a nimble and expressive soloist (his arco statement on "Bye Bye Blackbird" is especially engaging), and Riel has his shining moments as well, most notably on "Blackbird," "Autumn Leaves" and "You and the Night and the Music." But this is primarily a group effort, and one that seldom fails to please.

Contact: Stunt Records, 29 W. Maple Avenue, Bellmawr, NJ 08031 (phone 856-931-6441; fax 856-931-6445. www.sundance.dk

Track Listing: In Your Own Sweet Way; Bye Bye Blackbird; Autumn Leaves; Peace; A Child Is Born; On Green Dolphin Street; You and the Night and the Music; Siciliana (78:40).

Personnel: Alex Riel, drums; Kenny Werner, piano; Jesper Lundgaard, bass.

Year Released: 2002 | Record Label: Stunt Records/Sundance Music | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read Malnoia CD/LP/Track Review Malnoia
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 24, 2017
Read Get 'Em CD/LP/Track Review Get 'Em
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: April 24, 2017
Read Radioactive Landscapes EP CD/LP/Track Review Radioactive Landscapes EP
by Troy Dostert
Published: April 24, 2017
Read Wake Up Call CD/LP/Track Review Wake Up Call
by Glenn Astarita
Published: April 24, 2017
Read The Many Minds of Richie Cole CD/LP/Track Review The Many Minds of Richie Cole
by Rob Rosenblum
Published: April 24, 2017
Read LifeCycle CD/LP/Track Review LifeCycle
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 23, 2017
Read "Better Left Unsung" CD/LP/Track Review Better Left Unsung
by Doug Collette
Published: December 10, 2016
Read "Yellow Red Blue" CD/LP/Track Review Yellow Red Blue
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: November 2, 2016
Read "Back In Your Own Backyard" CD/LP/Track Review Back In Your Own Backyard
by Budd Kopman
Published: March 25, 2017
Read "Juggling Kukla" CD/LP/Track Review Juggling Kukla
by John Sharpe
Published: June 19, 2016
Read "Inner Agent" CD/LP/Track Review Inner Agent
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: May 20, 2016
Read "Bloodroot" CD/LP/Track Review Bloodroot
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: April 10, 2017

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM RECORDS | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!