Another great jazz album has crossed my listening desk in the form of the Manuel Valera Trio and their new album titled The Seasons. The Cuban born musician is now based out of New York City and has twelve albums to his credit.
On the album are Manuel Valera (piano), Hans Glawischnig (acoustic bass) and E.J. Strickland (drums).
The playing is absolutely superb throughout the album's eleven tracks. A rollicking drum beat and melodic piano begin the first track "Opening". This is contemporary jazz of the highest level. On "In The Eye Of The Beholder" Valera again demonstrates his melodic sensibility and complex nature with more dazzling piano work. "Tres Palabras" is a more melancholic piece while The Beatle's classic "In My Life" is a nice rendition as the trio make it their own without losing the song's classic core. The most complex piece has to be the title track, broken up into four movements. The second part titled "Summer" displays some incredible chops from all members as the tempo changes and musicianship are really quite spellbinding. The bass solo is excellent as is the piano solo in the third movement "Fall".
The Seasons is trio jazz played at a very high level and should turn the head of any fan of the genre. Highly recommended.
1. Opening (5:10)
2. In The Eye Of The Beholder (6:37)
3. Tres Palabras (5:58)
4. Hopeful (6:24)
5. In My Life (6:08)
6. Mov I – Spring (5:54)
7. Mov II – Summer (8:24)
8. Mov III – Fall (5:52)
9. Mov IV – Winter (3:36)
10. What Is This Thing Called Love (6:58)
11. Hallelujah (5:18)
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