Oh yes, trumpet-bass-drums trios are still to my liking, and quite a lot even. Maybe somewhat late, but here are three albums which should not be missed by fans of the format, or fans of jazz tout court, and interestingly enough, two of those albums are led by bass-players.
Maciej Garbowski, Piotr Damasiewicz & William Soovik - Sesto Elemento (Fundacja Sluchaj, 2015) ****½
The first one is led by Maciej Garbowski on double bass, with Piotr Damasiewicz on trumpet and William Soovik on drums. It is a brilliant journey into free improvisation, with the three instruments coloring space with broad sweeps or refined details, going deep into uncharted emotional territories, with sounds that are at times as liberating as they are oppressive, full of anguish and anxiety, or with blasts of joy, it is hard to tell, with other sentiments in between, the things without words but all too real, the feelings that are beyond expression in everyday life but who get their moment here, weird and wild, and so sensitive and moving and true. That is the 'sixth sense' of the title, revealing what can not be understood, and the way this trio does it is absolutely magnificent, compelling from beginning to end, and without exaggeration one of the most fascinating trumpet trios I've heard in years. What is even more to their credit is the use of their instruments, with little extended techniques, fully voiced trumpet and deep bass sounds and rustling percussion together creating an amazing listening experience.
Max Johnson Trio - Something Familiar (Fresh Sound New Talent/Bandcamp, 2015) ****
A real treat.
Josh Berman Trio - A Dance And A Hop (Delmark, 2015) ****
Don't miss it!