This album catches the talents of another set of jazz wunderkind from Europe, this time the Martin Sasse Trio. When one starts wondering, or pondering, about the future of jazz, it's time to take down an album like this from the shelf and get reassured that the genre is in good hands. And good hands is exactly what Martin Sasse takes to his piano. Citing McCoy Tyner as a major influence, one also hears some of Bill Evans and Tommy Flanagan. Sasse is always under control. He naturally leans towards the introspective, contemplative approach to the piano as on "The Modal Thing" and "Waltz for Katharina". However, he lets loose on one of the more engaging tracks on the CD, "Dear McCoy", a dedication to his idol. Here bassist Henning Gailing gets in some good licks as does Hendrik Smock on drums. "I Had the Craziest Dream" starts off a bit loungeish for my taste, but then the group segues into a relaxed seven minutes of improvising by Sasse and his cohorts with some imaginative right hand by the pianist. Gailing also expresses the melody using the higher end of the bass. Perhaps the most engaging track on the CD is "On a Clear Day" where Sasse does some Oscar Peterson right-hand trilling improvising.
Hopefully, Nagel Heyer won't wait too long before coming out with another album by this appealing trio.
Track Listing: Groove Machine; The Modal Thing; Waltz for Katharina; Dear McCoy; Sail Away; On a Clear Day; Ballade f
Personnel: Martin Sasse - Piano; Henning Gailing - Bass; Hendrik Smock - Drums