Drummer Reuben Hoch takes time to go to church on Of Recent Time, literally. His fine piano triofeaturing pianist Don Friedman and bassist Ed Schullerrecorded the set of familiar modern jazz tunes at the Community Presbyterian Church in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, getting some warm and expansive resonance into their artistry.
It's all a church, of course, for us jazz fans, whether it's a recording studio or a stage.
Hoch and company roll in a gentle and organic fashion through some well-chosen tunes by Sam Rivers ("Beatrice"), Pat Metheny ("Question and Answer"), Brad Mehldau ("Unrequited"), Ornette Coleman ("Turnaround," a nicely thorny change of pace and a showcase for Friedman) and Wayne Shorter ("Yes and No"), plus originals from Hoch and Friedman.
Throughout, the trio locks in for cohesion. Reuben Hoch proves himself an adept colorist and a superbly vibrant timekeeper, and Friedman has a flexible approach to the piano, evoking an understated elegance on Hoch's "Ballad for Nori," an edgy crispness on "Turnaround," and cool, boppish grooves in front of Ed Schuller's solid bass lines on his original "Flamands."