136

The Adrian Cohen Trio: Standardized

By

Sign in to view read count
The Adrian Cohen Trio: Standardized The body of music collectively known as “standards” consists of old show tunes, pop songs, and contributions to the jazz songbook by some of the most important composers and improvisers in the history of the music. These works became known as standards because they represented a musical lingua franca, a common language of shared cultural references, a well-spring from which any number of musicians who had never before met could draw in order to communicate their ideas.

Standards remain a large part of the language of jazz, even though many younger listeners are no longer familiar with the original songs themselves. An increasing number of contemporary musicians are looking to more recent sources – including the music of Björk, Nirvana, and Radiohead, just to name a few – for material that they hope might engage a new audience for jazz. Still, the standards persist.

Standardized is the debut recording by the Adrian Cohen Trio, and as the title suggests, it consists entirely of standards. In lesser hands, such a program might sound generic. Fortunately, pianist/leader Adrian Cohen is an extraordinary musician possessed of an equally impressive musical imagination. While his light touch reflects the influence of Bill Evans, Cohen is an artist well on his way to developing a unique voice on his instrument. Cohen, who studied under the remarkable Lee Shaw, has a marvelous sense of time and an almost conversational tone. His playing is confident and swinging, and it is clear that he will go far.

Drummer Pete Sweeney is a seasoned pro who has performed with such notables as Nick Brignola, Larry Coryell, and Duke Robillard. His skillful stickwork acts as a rhythmic foil to Cohen, always engaging the listener with his tasteful accents and fills. Bassist Michael DelPrete is the youngest member of the group, but is hardly the least of them. In fact, he seems mature beyond his 23 years. It will be interesting to see where this young man’s talent takes him.

Like any good piano trio, this group functions as a single entity, while still highlighting each member’s unique skills on his instrument. Each track is fully realized. Highlights from this disc include a lovely reading of John Coltrane’s “Naima” and a funky version of Miles Davis’s “Nardis” (which adds a Latin kick to the familiar tune). Dave Brubeck’s “In Your Own Sweet Way” is taken at a brisk pace, while Cohen and crew ably navigate the complexities of Dizzy Gillespie’s “BeBop” and Thelonious Monk’s “Rhythm-a-ning.”

That Cohen is able to convincingly tackle Monk, Brubeck, and Gillespie without sacrificing his identity says a great deal about his talent and his abilities as an arranger, as each song is refreshed through Cohen’s performance. This is an auspicious debut for an emerging talent.


Track Listing: Alone Together; Nardis; You Don't Know What Love Is; In Your Own Sweet Way; Be Bop; Rhythm-a- ning; Naima

Personnel: Adrian Cohen, piano; Michael DelPrete, bass; Pete Sweeney, drums

Year Released: 2003 | Record Label: WEPA Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read Backlog CD/LP/Track Review Backlog
by Mark F. Turner
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Over the Rainbow CD/LP/Track Review Over the Rainbow
by Paul Rauch
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Before The Silence CD/LP/Track Review Before The Silence
by John Sharpe
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Process And Reality CD/LP/Track Review Process And Reality
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1 CD/LP/Track Review Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 24, 2017
Read The Picasso Zone CD/LP/Track Review The Picasso Zone
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: February 23, 2017
Read "No Parking Any Time" CD/LP/Track Review No Parking Any Time
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: February 5, 2017
Read "The Ludwigsburg Concert" CD/LP/Track Review The Ludwigsburg Concert
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: May 10, 2016
Read "Reinvented" CD/LP/Track Review Reinvented
by Jim Olin
Published: February 27, 2016
Read "Sedimental You" CD/LP/Track Review Sedimental You
by Mark Sullivan
Published: November 4, 2016
Read "My Scandinavian Blues: A Tribute to Horace Parlan" CD/LP/Track Review My Scandinavian Blues: A Tribute to Horace Parlan
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: June 12, 2016
Read "Prick of the Litter" CD/LP/Track Review Prick of the Litter
by Doug Collette
Published: January 28, 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!