4

Donder: Still

Dan McClenaghan By

Sign in to view read count
A tiny brick chapel in the gloom of dusk, double doors flung open revealing a bright interior of the edifice in the foreground of dark, dense foliage, on the cover of Still, the debut CD release of the Belgium-based piano trio, Donder. The imagery portrays to perfection the music of the group. Reflective and often minimalist, neat and lovely in its architecture, appealing in its apparent simplicity.

It's impossible to avoid an ECM Records comparison with Still, specifically the label's European piano trio artistry from the likes of Marcin Wasilewski, Tord Gustavsen, Stefano Battaglia. These are trios that meld themselves into single wholes, with subtle group dynamics that still retain individual instrumental idiosyncrasies. Donder's pianist, Harrison Steingueldoir, seems to select every sound with deliberate determination, ringing out translucent notes and calculated chords. Stan Callewaert's bass lays a dark-hued backdrop—ringing single notes, eerie bowed interludes—and drummer Casper van de Velde weaves a tapestry of percussive rattles and rumblings on "Aurora," and a mini-orchestration of skins and cymbals to open "Spin/Zepplin."

The set sounds like a suite in its straight-through cohesion—atmospheric and cinematic, a soundtrack to a late afternoon in late autumn, dark clouds looming in off the slate gray ocean, a lone figure walking up a grassy knoll to a small house that is lit brightly from within, with a thunder rumbling softly in the distance.

Track Listing: SSS; Welle; Andrej; Aurora; Adem; Spin/Zepplin; Snojor.

Personnel: Harrison Steingueldoir: piano; Stan Callewaert: bass; Casper Van De Velde: drums.

Title: Still | Year Released: 2016 | Record Label: Self Produced

Tags

Watch

Shop for Music

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

Related Articles

Read Peaceful
Peaceful
By Mark Sullivan
Read Live in Nuremberg
Live in Nuremberg
By Hrayr Attarian
Read Diversity
Diversity
By Ian Patterson
Read Waves
Waves
By Don Phipps
Read Sun Stone
Sun Stone
By Jerome Wilson
Read Relight
Relight
By John Sharpe