Trichotomy: Variations (Naim Jazz naimcd131)
The more one listens to modern jazz piano trios the more one realises just how influential E.S.T have been. No group since the Bill Evans Trio in the 1960s has so profoundly altered the path taken by the perfect little combo of acoustic piano, double bass and drums.
The opener, Island Of The Sun, could fool many in a blindfold test into thinking they had stumbled on an unreleased E.S.T. recording, albeit from their early, From Gagarin’s Point Of View period. And if they listened to At The Right Moment, its follow-up, in the same circumstances, they might think of the Tord Gustavsen Trio.
But to suggest that this Australian threesome of Sean Foren (piano), John Parker (drums) and Patrick Marchisella (bass) are copyists would probably be unfair. What they have done is absorb the influences of some of the most distinctive piano trios around in the last decade. And that includes The Bad Plus and fellow Australians The Necks, too. They also, like so many young jazz groups, listen to Radiohead and Tortoise, too. And Philip Glass.
There are strong tunes here, there are good grooves, there is subtle interplay, and a nice range of moods, from delicate swing on At The Right Moment, to minimalist texture-laden pieces like Start (which includes strings and saxophone), and complex cross rhythms and pretty freaky moments on Variations On A Bad Day.
Excellent sound as you would expect from Naim.
Trichotomy are currently touring the UK and play Cardiff’s Torfaen Jazz Society this evening, Stratford-upon-Avon’s Stratford Jazz on Sunday, Ray’s Jazz Shop in London early on Monday evening, The Vortex in London on Tuesday, The Stables inMilton Keynes on Wednesday, The Jazz Bar in Edinburgh on Thursday and City Halls in Glasgow next Saturday. For more information of all these gigs go their website here and for the Stratford-upon-Avon gig go here.
Categories: CD review