Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

352

Gonzalo Rubalcaba: Solo

Jim Santella By

Sign in to view read count
This solo piano album from Gonzalo Rubalcaba finds the artist searching. With themes from Afro-Cuban culture running through his performance, he improvises soulfully and at his own pace. As one of the jazz world's most exciting pianists, he's able to sit down, take his time, and let the ideas flow gently. Each piece represents a passionate ordeal, both introspective and lush.

Rubalcaba keeps his program under the radar for the most part. Quiet lullabies, gentle boleros and soft-spoken improvs give the album a dreamy impression. He allows harmony to settle gracefully while melodies float on a summer breeze. The pianist, hurrying nothing, allows plenty of time for his ideas to grow.

Crisp keyboard cascades tie these dreamy themes together, but the session mellows for the most part with very little animation. Each idea is shrouded in dreamland. "Here's That Rainy Day, for example, advances slowly and delicately with caterpillar-like movements. The gentleness of Rubalcaba's touch fits the song's lyric to a tee. The same is true of Charlie Haden's "Nightfall, which is interpreted peacefully, as if shimmering at lakeside in the moonlight when the air is damp with fog and morning dew.

The exception comes with "Prólogo. Here Rubalcaba does what he does best, improvising on a popular theme and making it his own. He still finds space in his exploratory interpretation for dreamy soliloquies, but the excitement is all there. And it's powerful. The pianist makes us wait for this moment, and it's always worth the anticipation. Ultimately he lights an inspiring fire.

Track Listing: Rezo (Praise Be!); Quasar; Silencio (Silence); Improv #1; Canci

Personnel: Gonzalo Rubalcaba: piano.

Title: Solo | Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: Blue Note Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and you'll support us in the process. Learn how.

Live Reviews
Album Reviews
Live Reviews
Album Reviews
Extended Analysis
Album Reviews
Live Reviews
Album Reviews
Read more articles
Playing Lecuona

Playing Lecuona

Sony Music
2016

buy
Volcan

Volcan

5Passion
2013

buy
XXI Century

XXI Century

5Passion
2012

buy
Fe...Faith

Fe...Faith

5Passion
2011

buy
Fe' ... Faith

Fe' ... Faith

5Passion
2011

buy
Avatar

Avatar

Blue Note Records
2008

buy

Related Articles

Read When Will The Blues Leave Album Reviews
When Will The Blues Leave
By Karl Ackermann
May 22, 2019
Read Crowded Heart Album Reviews
Crowded Heart
By Dan Bilawsky
May 22, 2019
Read Infinite Itinerant Album Reviews
Infinite Itinerant
By Geno Thackara
May 22, 2019
Read Pulcino Album Reviews
Pulcino
By Nicholas F. Mondello
May 22, 2019
Read Hastings Jazz Collective/Shadow Dances Album Reviews
Hastings Jazz Collective/Shadow Dances
By Dan McClenaghan
May 21, 2019
Read Crowded Heart Album Reviews
Crowded Heart
By Nicholas F. Mondello
May 21, 2019
Read That's a Computer Album Reviews
That's a Computer
By Jerome Wilson
May 21, 2019