Thursday, August 25, 2016

The Fred Hersch Trio, Sunday Night at the Vanguard

There is something about pianist Fred Hersch's trio and the new album Sunday Night at the Vanguard (Palmetto Records 2183). It is further growth. They are reaching higher and getting there magnificently. It's a full program of standards and originals with John Hebert on bass and Eric McPherson on drums. And it is a sterling example of the post-Bill-Evans-style piano trio in the hands of the three.

The standards are not entirely standard: you get Rodgers' "A Cockeyed Optimist," the Beatles' "For No One," Rowles' "The Peacocks," Monk's "We See" in nicely wrought versions with the kind of sophisticated voicings one expects from Hersch and with some glorious right hand lines. There are four substantial Hersch originals, too.

And throughout the trio swings and finesses its way through the material on a highly elevated, highly evolved plane that all who dig the piano trio tradition will take to heart.

It's one all Hersch fans cannot afford to miss--and a great one to start with if you do not know his music. Do not hesitate.

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