Michael Attias - Renku In Coimbra (Clean Feed, 2009) ****
In partnership with John Hébert on bass and Satoshi Takeishi on drums, alto saxophonist Michael Attias releases a really sensitive and passionate album, all in a post-boppish mode, with covers of Lee Konitz' "Thingin'" and Jimmy Lyons' "Sorry", but with a range and sensitivity that goes a step further. Listen to "Do & The Birds" to hear some real beauty emerge out of random sounds, in the most free form imagineable. Although the performance was recorded in one afternoon at the occasion of a jazz festival in Coimbra, Portugal (but not at the festival), the trio has been playing together since 2003, and that can be heard. They are joined by Russ Lossing on piano on "Fenix Culprit" the most intense track. And although half of the tracks are composed by Hébert, the main voice obviously is the alto. The lyricism of Attias is astounding, his tone is warm and sensitive, and without raising his voice, his tone is quite powerful. Hébert and Takeishi are the perfect band mates: precise, responsive and playing with the same level of disciplined passion.