231

Piers Lawrence Quartet: Stolen Moments

C. Michael Bailey By

Sign in to view read count
William "Count" Basie was a master of economy in his piano playing. Never flashy or overtly technical, Basie had a knack for being able to play the least number of notes while still maintaining the necessary momentum to swing. Miles Davis was another such master, where the music was more about style than technique. Guitarist Piers Lawrence is also such a musical economist. His jazz guitar playing is paced and refined, each note carefully considered and placed with no interest in practicing flashy virtuosity.

Stolen Moments is a collection of originals and standards that showcase Lawrence's stripped down approach to jazz guitar. Lawrence employs a piano trio for his rhythm format, approximating that used by Wes Montgomery on his famous Wynton Kelly recordings. Lawrence chooses a round, even guitar tone, not unlike the aforementioned Montgomery or Joe Pass slowed down to 33 & 1/3. Lawrence never plays too many notes (as, yes, Pass occasionally did), resulting in tasteful, listenable and completely accessible jazz.

Lawrence's acute empathy with pianist Chuk Fowler allows the latter broad latitude in his comping and soloing, both in intense evidence on Sonny Rollin's "Pent-Up House" and Oliver Nelson's "Stolen Moments." Fowler shows great capability in playing both mainstream and acoustic smooth jazz (hear the thoroughly adult contemporary bent of "Everytime").

Bassist Jim Hankins shines brightly on the title piece and Lawrence's "Samba Christina," a lilting Latin melody. The entire ensemble must collect their considerable talent for Charlie Parker's "Donna Lee," where the performance is brisk, but not too fast, drawing forth all that is ornithology. Stolen Moments is the complete package: intelligently chosen repertoire, well arranged, and expertly performed.


Track Listing: Pent-Up House; Samba Christina; Stolen Moments; Everytime; Donna Lee; Dimanche; Secret Love; Reza.

Personnel: Piers Lawrence: guitar; Chuk Fowler: piano; Jim Hankins: bass; Sir Earl Grice: drums.

Title: Stolen Moments | Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Jazznet.com


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Aqustico vol 2 CD/LP/Track Review Aqustico vol 2
by Geno Thackara
Published: September 25, 2017
Read Lattice CD/LP/Track Review Lattice
by Mark Corroto
Published: September 25, 2017
Read Beginnings CD/LP/Track Review Beginnings
by David A. Orthmann
Published: September 25, 2017
Read Synchronic CD/LP/Track Review Synchronic
by Roger Farbey
Published: September 25, 2017
Read Slægt CD/LP/Track Review Slægt
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: September 24, 2017
Read An Eye on the Future CD/LP/Track Review An Eye on the Future
by Jack Bowers
Published: September 24, 2017
Read "Hybrido - From Rio To Wayne Shorter" CD/LP/Track Review Hybrido - From Rio To Wayne Shorter
by Roger Farbey
Published: April 12, 2017
Read "Air and Light and Time and Space" CD/LP/Track Review Air and Light and Time and Space
by John Eyles
Published: June 28, 2017
Read "Threes" CD/LP/Track Review Threes
by Troy Dostert
Published: July 14, 2017
Read "Pocono Git-Down" CD/LP/Track Review Pocono Git-Down
by Edward Blanco
Published: March 1, 2017
Read "Just Left of Center" CD/LP/Track Review Just Left of Center
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: July 7, 2017
Read "Onward" CD/LP/Track Review Onward
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 5, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.