Book of Colours is an extremely pleasant jazz piano trio (piano, double bass, drums) album especially notable for the fact that the trio's leader, the German Hubert Nuss, is a fan of the 20th century classical composer Messiaen and bases many of the compositions on the album around his modal techniques.
Nuss wanted to write music that would represent colour and the tonal techniques are applied to this end.
Now, that may sound a bit high-falutin' to you, but we've often written in these pages about how "atmospheric", ambient music can conjure up many ideas in the mind of the listener. So music lovers shouldn't be afraid by references to Messiaen or jazz or tonal/modal music. Question is, how does it sound, is it good?
It sounds great! Nuss's piano playing is a delight, delicate in touch and the music sounds far more melodic than one might expect given its origin. The double-bass and drums add subtle backing, seemingly accentuating the beauty of the piano. Overall, you could choose to listen to this album simply to seduce your loved one over a candle-lit dinner if you wanted, no need to get into the heavy Messiaenic thing.
I can recommend it wholeheartedly as an album of subtle, beautiful, relaxing piano trio jazz!
1) The Three Doomed Men (6:05)
2) The Colours of Tyrus Wong (AD – Colours) (4:27)
3) Galaxy NGC 300 (Mode VII, 1) (5:34)
4) Night Stars (4:57)
5) The Pictures of Charles Blanc-Gatti (Mode VI, 1) (2:55)
6) Alia (5:37)
7) Mirror Universe (Mode II, 3) (2:56)
8) For Jamey (5:45)
9) The Dark Diamond of Donezk (Mode II, 2) (2:28)
10) Another Kind of Paris (Mode III, 2) (2:17)
11) Coloured Cathedral Daylight (Mode II, 1) (1:56)
12) Barry & Ollie (Mode III, 3) (3:27)
13) The Art of Dominique Louis (Mode III, 4) (3:19)
14) The Water of Life (Mode II, 1) (1:49)
15) The Amethyst (Mode III, 1) (3:35)
16) Bloomed (3:50)