Thursday, February 22, 2007
Tom Arthurs - Squash Recipe (Babel, 2006) ****
This is another great album by British trumpeter Tom Arthurs, or rather by the trio with Bruce McKinnon on piano and Joe Sorbara on drums. The music on (by?) Squash Recipe is a delightful adventure into modern jazz or just music as such. Sometimes dancing, as in "Overwrought", with great interplay, sometimes brooding, as in "Touched", with contemplative piano and slow muted trumpet, sometimes playful, as in "The Floorboard Variations", sometimes fragile, as in "Banffalo", a very abstract improv, sometimes melodious, as in "Refractal", a beautiful minimalist repetitive piece, sometimes intense, as in "P2C2E", with odd rhythm changes, but on all pieces the musicianship is excellent, with three artists creating new sounds, and sound combinations on the spot, yet structured, with a clear common end-point. And that is probably the major achievement of the trio, that despite the broad pallette of musical exploration they bring, their vision is coherent and the album has a strong internal unity. This is an album to listen to very often, because each time you will find new nuances, new subtleties, ... in short : great.