387

Brad Mehldau: The Art of the Trio, Vol. 3: Songs

By

Sign in to view read count
Brad Mehldau: The Art of the Trio, Vol. 3: Songs The newly renowned pianist, returning to the studio for this, his fourth American release, avoids the lengthy cadenzas which were an unusual, prominent and exciting feature of his last recording. He retains another of his distinguishing stylistic characteristics, though: witness the bravura counterpoint passage during his solo in "Unrequited."

That said, the essential difference between this and the earlier, live date is in the frequently melancholy tone of Songs. There's some of the excitement which Mehldau brought to his Village Vanguard recording, but it's not widespread. He's helped by Grenadier and Rossy; the interactivity in the trio makes for some of the high spots in their recorded output.

It just doesn't get to me. For example, a ballad is an opportunity for a reflective pianist to really let the music breathe, something that Mehldau does on "For All We Know," but on "Bewitched," the slow pace seems to frustrate him, and he responds by dropping the pianist's equivalent of a drummer's bombs.

To some degree, he's a remarkably untraditional jazz pianist, using counterpoint instead of swing as his central principle. Perhaps I need my jazz pianists to be a little dirtier. But there's no question that Mehldau's music is a treat for those who want to hear something different, and who like moodiness and melancholy expertly purveyed by an improvising pianist.


Track Listing: Song-song; Unrequited; Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered; Exit Music (for a film); At a Loss; Convalescent; For All We Know; River Man; Young at Heart; Sehnsucht.

Personnel: Brad Mehldau: piano; Larry Grenadier: bass; Jorge Rossy: drums.

Title: The Art of the Trio, Vol. 3: Songs | Year Released: 1998 | Record Label: Warner Bros.


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Towards Language CD/LP/Track Review Towards Language
by John Eyles
Published: June 23, 2017
Read The Romeo and Juliet Project CD/LP/Track Review The Romeo and Juliet Project
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 23, 2017
Read Saluting Sgt. Pepper CD/LP/Track Review Saluting Sgt. Pepper
by Roger Farbey
Published: June 23, 2017
Read Crystal Machine CD/LP/Track Review Crystal Machine
by Glenn Astarita
Published: June 23, 2017
Read Saluting Sgt. Pepper CD/LP/Track Review Saluting Sgt. Pepper
by Karl Ackermann
Published: June 22, 2017
Read Thick as Thieves CD/LP/Track Review Thick as Thieves
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 22, 2017
Read "682/681" CD/LP/Track Review 682/681
by Karl Ackermann
Published: May 5, 2017
Read "Split Kick - Live In Sweden 1972" CD/LP/Track Review Split Kick - Live In Sweden 1972
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: August 14, 2016
Read "Salão Brazil" CD/LP/Track Review Salão Brazil
by John Sharpe
Published: March 30, 2017
Read "The Fever: The Remastered Epic Recordings" CD/LP/Track Review The Fever: The Remastered Epic Recordings
by Doug Collette
Published: April 9, 2017
Read "Neuroplastic Groove" CD/LP/Track Review Neuroplastic Groove
by Eyal Hareuveni
Published: August 18, 2016
Read "Live in New York" CD/LP/Track Review Live in New York
by Mark Corroto
Published: August 8, 2016

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

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