308

Michel Camilo: Spirit of the Moment

C. Michael Bailey By

Sign in to view read count
Michel Camilo: Spirit of the Moment Native of the Dominican Republic, Michel Camilo has forged a highly personal approach to piano composition and performance. His playing is refreshingly devoid of the hypersensitive impressionism practice performed in the wake of Bill Evans and that pianist's acolytes. Camilo's style is strapping and powerful but can encompass gentleness and introspection, just not too much. Camilo is well documented electronically with releases on Telarc including Rhapsody in Blue (2006), Solo (2005), and Live at the Blue Note (2004).

Camilo continues his trio line of thinking with The Spirit of the Moment where he leads a superb trio consisting of Charles Flores on bass and Zoho Music mainstay Dafnis Prieto on drums. It is immediately apparent from the beginning of "Just Now, the disc's opening cut, that Camilo is firmly in control of a powerful format, guiding it expertly through the waters of the Caribbean into the Gulf of Mexico and beyond.

If the devil is in the details, then so is the good stuff. Camilo opens Moment with the original "Just Now. Flores introduces the piece with a short, funk-laden grove that is joined by an intricate island drumbeat from Prieto. Against this backdrop, Camilo plays the blues. Yes, the blues...the greasy chicken shack variety soul jazz of Lee Morgan's "Cornbread. "My Secret Place casts Flores playing arco against cymbal crescendos, allowing Camilo to be his most lyrical. But Camilo has no pastels in his color scheme; they are solid primaries and secondaries.

"Spirit of the Moment picks up where "Just Now left off, except the cloth woven by Camilo is much more complex. After a challenging introduction, Camilo and Prieto spar for a chorus before being joined by Flores for another Latin-Islands jaunt. Camilo's soloing is taut and robust, illuminating the pianist's command of the trio format. Flores turns in a straight-ahead bass solo that never veers off the radar of musical pragmatism. His style is more full bodied than the late Gene Harris, yet the two have much in common in the force with which they play.

"Repercussions is another blues (one certainly of the 21st Century) that displays again an intricate simpatico among the players. Not an Evans-LaFaro-Motian empathy, but a swinging cooperative where each member understands the other perfectly. This cooperation is extended to the standards "Nefertiti, "Nardis, and a weirdly contrapuntal "Giant Steps. The latter Coltrane piece shows Camilo perfectly capable of Postmodern deconstruction of a classic piece of music, making it new.


Track Listing: Just Now; My Secret Place; Spirit of the Moment; Repercussions; Nefertiti; Nardis; Trilogy; Giant Steps; A Place in Time; Hurry Up and Wait; Liquid Crystal; Solar (Explorations).

Personnel: Michel Camilo: piano; Charles Flores: bass; Dafnis Prieto: drums.

Year Released: 2007 | Record Label: Telarc Records | Style: Latin/World


Shop

More Articles

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 June CD/LP/Track Review June
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 22, 2017
Read The Invariant CD/LP/Track Review The Invariant
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 22, 2017
Read Akua's Dance CD/LP/Track Review Akua's Dance
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Daylight Ghosts CD/LP/Track Review Daylight Ghosts
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 21, 2017
Read "Piano Mating" CD/LP/Track Review Piano Mating
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 28, 2016
Read "Chasing Pixies" CD/LP/Track Review Chasing Pixies
by Eyal Hareuveni
Published: May 30, 2016
Read "Fourtune" CD/LP/Track Review Fourtune
by Duncan Heining
Published: November 28, 2016
Read "Pascal Battus / Dafne Vicente-Sandoval</em>" CD/LP/Track Review Pascal Battus / Dafne Vicente-Sandoval
by John Eyles
Published: June 17, 2016
Read "When In Moscow" CD/LP/Track Review When In Moscow
by Mark Sullivan
Published: March 12, 2016
Read "La Sombra" CD/LP/Track Review La Sombra
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: January 10, 2017

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!