The forward motion of pieces such as the title track, "La Inquieta", "Playing", and "El Orzuelo" will remind listeners of Astor Piazzolla and Guillermo Klein yet Teubal is no mimic. Guitarist Diaz is quite percussive on "El Orzuelo" with his powerful strumming in the opening section and his pounding on the body of his instrument during the powerful piano and clarinet interaction. He takes a similar approach on the opening of "La Inquieta" before he joins the piano and clarinet in the escalating melody lines (Teubal's left hand builds an excellent foundation for the melody and the interactions). The trio chases after each other in the delightful romp of the solo section. It's joyous, impressive, and certainly breathtaking music. The previous track, "Playing", is a delight-filled solo piano piece that one might expect at the close of the program. Here, it's in the middle of the album, literally pulling the listener into the songs that follow.
The ballads are equally as breathtaking but for other reasons. "April 7th" opens with bass clarinet, soft guitar, and slowly unwinding piano melody. As the intensity builds, so does the emotion. The piano gives way to a plaintiff clarinet melody with smart counterpoint from the guitar. There is a melancholy sadness to "En la Dia de los Muertos (An American Tragedy)", not surprising since the pianist composed the piece on the November 2016 night of the US Election Day. With that amount of gravitas, one is temper to read many things into the music. Put that out of your mind and let the music flow into your ears and get wrapped up in the excellent interaction of the trio.
For more information, go to www.emilioteubal.com.
Look and listen to the trio:
|photo by John Rogers
|photo: Danielle White
For more information, go to www.willfulmusic.com.
Here's the band on the night of the recording:
"Twio" stands out for many reasons, not the least of which is how much fun the musicians are having in the studio. Walter Smith III displays a "clean and clear" sound with little vibrato and his solos steer clear of cliches. With "Contrafact" the only original tune, the musicians make these standards anything but "standard." What a treat from start to finish!
For more information, go to www.waltersmith3.com.
Here's Smith3, Redman, McBride, and Harland:
Adam Nussbaum may have waited a long time to release his debut album but he has been an active and influential member of the creative music scene for a long time. "The Lead Belly Project" plays tribute to a giant of American music and proves how his music is integral to the development of popular music. This album won't challenge the listener but will certainly soothe, amuse, and entertain anyone who gives it a spin.
For more information, go to Adam Nussbaum's website at mark4.ram.tripod.com/NussbaumWeb/.
Here's the band live: