Playing With The Trio

A 9 track jazz piano album (37m 46s) — released September 23rd 2013 on Schema Rearward

"There is a two-fold pleasure in listening to the leader of a big band

play in a trio setting. First, there is the satisfaction of hearing a voice

that is normally in the background being brought to centre stage. As

a composer and arranger, Francy Boland typically spoke with many

tongues. Like Ellington, he wrote with specific players in mind and

so, as with a playwright, we usually hear his thoughts interpreted

and given utterance by others. The big band format allows the

band-leader to project their ideas in grand form, and with the widest

range of tones and emphases. It also allows a reserved composer

to hide his own light amidst the blaze of brighter burning stars.

Boland was of famously modest and self-effacing nature, so to hear

him play in this context is something to treasure. And with Klook

and Woode behind him the session is, of course, a perfectly cut

gem: unassuming but wholly flawless, and shining with intelligent

musical light.

Second, there is a more intellectual pleasure, for with an occasional

trio like this one we get to examine the music of a large ensemble in

reduced form, and from the most privileged point of view. In the

company of the composer himself, the trio guides us through

versions of familiar Clarke-Boland numbers that have been pared

back to absolute essentials, allowing us to see the delicate forms

that reside within the complex machinery of Boland's arrangements.

The thickets of brass and reeds, the star turns by soloists, the sheer

noise and drama of the big band all drop away: the songs are

stripped down to founding principles, to the clear colours and subtle

accents of the compositional heartwood.

And with this trio in particular we also have the privilege of

observing the reactions that take place at the core of the band. Not

only do we get to hear Boland's piano in the foreground, but we

also hear the quality of his relationship with Klook in direct form.

Their interaction cushioned by the supremely constant Jimmy

Woode, the two leaders of what was unquestionably the premier

European jazz big band of its era can here be heard stretching out

on their own material. There was good reason to separate these

recordings from their original setting on Boland's Vogue LP Going

Classic, where they had appeared stirred through with orchestral

arrangements, for the private conversation between these three

master musicians has all the wisdom and reserve that befits vast

experience and immaculate good taste. We should feel lucky that

we can listen in."

Francis Gooding

Lovely re-issue. Great to have a promo service that puts it all together!! - Chris Philips Jazz FM /

Wonderful, crystal clear reissue of timeless music-fantastic to have any promo service paying attention to such rare gems! - Scott Fugate / AtlantaJazz / Jazz Evangelist Productions

Another masterpiece by the European jazz leaders. Little bit more dark and blue than my average taste but i like it. The percussions on ‘The Girl And The Turk’, the soft classy rhythm of ‘Dierdre's Blues’ and the sweetness of ‘I'm All Smiles' are stayin’ in my mind everytime that I listened this. - Dj Nova Nova Planet Radio Show

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