195

Larry Goldings Trio: Moonbird

David Adler By

Sign in to view read count
One of the most consistently satisfying straight-ahead jazz outfits, the Larry Goldings Trio joins the Palmetto Records roster with the fine Moonbird. Goldings has made his mark on the Hammond organ as a sideman with the likes of John Scofield, Jim Hall, Chris Potter, and Maceo Parker. His long-standing trio, with Peter Bernstein on guitar and Bill Stewart on drums, can be seen and heard nearly every week at Small’s in New York. Moonbird is representative of the group’s intimate-yet-fiery live sound. It’s some of Goldings’s strongest and most focused work to date.

The disc features a variety of feels and moods, from the bayou rhythm of "Crawdaddy" to the contemplative dissonance of "Empty Oceans." Three mid-tempo numbers, "Moonbird," "Christine," and "Comfort Zone," come closest to what I would call this trio’s signature sound—a breezy and lyrical yet aggressive swing. Listen as Bernstein attacks the melody at the bridge on the lovely title track. This is a pure and sublime hard bop moment, and the trio knows just how to milk it for all it’s worth. "Xoloft" is another hard bop highlight with a quicker tempo. Bernstein is riveting as he darts from high to low register yet never loses sight of the next perfect phrase. And Stewart’s unaccompanied solo is characteristically shrewd.

Two pop covers appear. I’ve never been a fan of the pop/rock cover trend in jazz, and Goldings has certainly shown lapses in this regard in the past—take the Sanborn-scarred "Boogie On Reggae Woman" from his 1995 Warner Brothers release Whatever It Takes. Here, however, his reading of Joni Mitchell’s "Woodstock" as a slow straight-eighth jam genuinely works, as does his gospel-tinged rendering of Randy Newman’s "I Think It’s Going to Rain Today."

The record closes with a hidden track—a reprise of "Empty Oceans," but this time with Goldings extemporizing beautifully over the theme on acoustic piano. Perhaps because we’re used to the thick, heavy sound of the organ, Goldings’s piano playing sounds uncommonly fluid and free. A pretty end to an exceptionally pretty album.

Cyberhome: www.palmetto-records.com

| Record Label: Palmetto Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read The Picasso Zone CD/LP/Track Review The Picasso Zone
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: February 23, 2017
Read The MUH Trio – Prague After Dark CD/LP/Track Review The MUH Trio – Prague After Dark
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Les Deux Versants Se Regardent CD/LP/Track Review Les Deux Versants Se Regardent
by John Sharpe
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Molto Bene CD/LP/Track Review Molto Bene
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Fellowship CD/LP/Track Review Fellowship
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 22, 2017
Read E.S.T. Symphony CD/LP/Track Review E.S.T. Symphony
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 22, 2017
Read "Michael Shrieve's Spellbinder" CD/LP/Track Review Michael Shrieve's Spellbinder
by Doug Collette
Published: August 17, 2016
Read "Sarabande" CD/LP/Track Review Sarabande
by Budd Kopman
Published: March 3, 2016
Read "Ubuntu" CD/LP/Track Review Ubuntu
by James Nadal
Published: March 29, 2016
Read "Upset The Status Quo" CD/LP/Track Review Upset The Status Quo
by James Nadal
Published: May 11, 2016
Read "Live At Umbria Jazz" CD/LP/Track Review Live At Umbria Jazz
by James Nadal
Published: March 9, 2016
Read "Festen" CD/LP/Track Review Festen
by John Sharpe
Published: November 12, 2016

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!

Buy it!