314

Benny Lackner Trio: Pilgrim

Dan McClenaghan By

Sign in to view read count
Benny Lackner Trio: Pilgrim The Benny Lackner Trio calls itself a "collective," with each member "interjecting equally toward the construction of the material." This sef-description was certainly true of the group's previous outing, Sign of the Times (Nagel Heyer, 2006). It's an even more accurate characterization of the group's approach on Pilgrim.

The "collective" is a piano trio, with some subtle electronics added—Wurlitzer and Nord lead 2—along with a dash of electro-percussion. When you talk piano trio and equality of each member's input, you start with Bill Evans and run through Keith Jarrett and on to Brad Mehldau. Lackner and company definitely fit into the Mehldau mold: a mix of subtlety and insistence, understatement and delicate beauty underlain by a firm melodic path.

The equality part of the group dynamic is increased on Pilgrim by the songwriting contributions of bassist Derek Nievergelt and drummer Robert Perkins. On Sign of the Times they co-penned only one tune with Lackner—"Sister Love." On the present recording Nievergelt contributes five of his own tunes, and Perkins collaborates with Lackner and/or Nievergelt on four more.

Whereas Sign of the Times drew from composers like Gershwin, Bjork, Mal Waldron and Prince (how's that for a mix?), Pilgrim stays with mostly group-penned tunes, with the exception of two marvelous covers of songs written by the Canadian singer/songwriter Feist—the lovely, fragile "Lonely, Lonely" and the somber "Let It Die."

Part of the strength of this set is the sustained quiet mood. The sound is introspective and understated— no flash or pyrotechics—with lots of breathing room and first-rate musicianship, reminiscent (delving into the pop world) of Bob Dylan's John Wesley Harding (Columbia, '67) or Van Morrison's Astral Weeks (Warner Brothers, '68). A sound that caresses, seduces, and lasts.

Track Listing: Mowgla; Pilgrim; Beyond; Let it Die; Brad Plus; Blind; I Never; Lonely, Lonely; K.W.S. Nightmare; Transkei; Emma's Song.

Personnel: Benny Lackner: piano, Wurlitzer, Nord Lead 2; Robert Perkins: drums, percussion, electronic beats; Derek Nievergelt: acoustic bass, fender bass, Wurlitzer (6,7), Nord lead 2 (2).

Year Released: 2007 | Record Label: Stray Dog Music | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read Groove Dreams CD/LP/Track Review Groove Dreams
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: May 23, 2017
Read Kami Fusen CD/LP/Track Review Kami Fusen
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 23, 2017
Read Two CD/LP/Track Review Two
by Joe Gatto
Published: May 23, 2017
Read Galaxies Like Grains Of Sand CD/LP/Track Review Galaxies Like Grains Of Sand
by Roger Farbey
Published: May 23, 2017
Read Nightfall CD/LP/Track Review Nightfall
by John Kelman
Published: May 22, 2017
Read Pekka CD/LP/Track Review Pekka
by Roger Farbey
Published: May 22, 2017
Read "Empty The Headbin" CD/LP/Track Review Empty The Headbin
by Mark Corroto
Published: July 15, 2016
Read "High Noon" CD/LP/Track Review High Noon
by Anthony Shaw
Published: September 10, 2016
Read "Jailhouse Doc With Holes In Her Socks" CD/LP/Track Review Jailhouse Doc With Holes In Her Socks
by Jerome Wilson
Published: September 24, 2016
Read "Swan Song" CD/LP/Track Review Swan Song
by Mark Sullivan
Published: December 17, 2016
Read "Source" CD/LP/Track Review Source
by Eyal Hareuveni
Published: August 25, 2016
Read "In Praise of Shadows" CD/LP/Track Review In Praise of Shadows
by Dave Wayne
Published: March 19, 2017
comments powered by Disqus

Why wait?

Support All About Jazz and we'll deliver exclusive content, hide ads, hide slide-outs, and provide read access to our future articles.

Buy it!