Refraction is an Australian piano trio led by drummer Chris Broomhead
, who also composed most of the music. He is joined by pianist Brenton Foster
(who contributes two tunes) and double bassist Jordan Tarento. Inerrant Space
definitely does not sound like a "drummer's album." It's very much a group sound, as the collective group name implies. Broomhead makes his mark by his writing and sensitive playing: there are no drum solos.
The music is bright, lyrical and impressionistic, along the lines of the more extroverted ECM artists like the Tord Gustavsen
Quartet and Stefano Bollani
. The brief title tune (the only one co-composed by the entire group) serves as an atmospheric scene-setter. "329" opens with arpeggiated chords, then builds a structure around them. Tarento's bass solo segues into a bridge with a melody doubled by the piano.
Pianist Foster's compositions take the band into slightly more conventional piano trio territory. "All To Do" includes the closest thing to a drum solo, as Broomhead plays freely under the closing vamp. "Kodak Hill" has a melodic and rhythmic structure reminiscent of Chick Corea
. Other memorable tracks include the ballad "Rest, Regain" and "Cosmic Orphan" with its rhapsodic, rubato opening featuring arco bass. Closer "Boho Church" has a gospel feel, as implied by the title. It brings to mind another ECM reference, the many Keith Jarrett
pieces with that feel. A fitting close to a thoroughly enjoyable album by a group with their own voice.
Track Listing: Inerrant Space; 329; Never Since; All To Do; Rest, Regain; Kodak Hill; Departure; Echoes; Cosmic Orphan; Boho Church.
Personnel: Chris Broomhead: drums; Brenton Foster: piano; Jordan Tarento: double bass.
Year Released: 2016
| Record Label: Rare Colour Records
| Style: Modern Jazz