The Afro-Cuban connection is slightly transformed on nascent pianist David Virelles' inspirational trio set, featuring modern jazz luminaries, bassist Ben Street and drummer Andrew Cyrille. With his second solo outing and first for PI Recordings, the pianist has quickly surged to the forefront since migrating from Cuba to Canada, supporting distinguished saxophonist Jane Bunnett and receiving the first-ever Oscar Peterson Award.
On "The Executioner," Virelles commingles traditional Latin jazz values with futuristic ideologies and benefits from Cuban folklorist, percussionist Roman Diaz's prophetic recitations amid a series of highs, lows, and topsy-turvy passages. Using space as a fourth instrument where the musicians spawn a medium-tempo movement, leading to Cyrille's poetic solo, they subsequently propagate an open-ended musical vista. However, Virelles' supply executed and quietly melodic chord clusters segue to Diaz's forceful spoken word spot towards the finale. The pianist ups the ante with thick block chords and serves as the recipient of Diaz' articulations during a brief, yet conversational opus. The trio generates quite a bit of high heat on other tracks, but Virelles also conveys maturity by working within deftly enacted textural elements, while accenting, shadowing and stirring the plot along the way.
Personnel: David Virelles: piano, pump organ, Wurlitzer organ; Ben Street: acoustic bass; Andrew Cyrille: drums, cowbells, gongs, maracas, hoe, miscellaneous percussion.
I grew up listening to my father's jazz records and listening to the radio. My dad was a musician for many years as a vocalist, bassist and drummer. His two uncles played in the Symphony of Reggio Calabria back in Italy
I grew up listening to my father's jazz records and listening to the radio. My dad was a musician for many years as a vocalist, bassist and drummer. His two uncles played in the Symphony of Reggio Calabria back in Italy. So music and jazz specifically have been a part of me since I was born. I love and perform in all styles of music from around the world. Improvisation in jazz is what drew me in, and still does as well as other genres that feature improvisation. A group of great musicians expressing themselves as one is the hallmark of great jazz and in fact all great music.