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January by Marcin Wasilewski Trio

Beauty takes on various shapes and colors with this 2008 release, highlighting the broad talents of Polish pianist Marcin Wasilewski and his fellow countrymen. The trio gained notoriety by supporting trumpeter Tomasz Stanko, commencing in the late ‘90s and since that time have blossomed into a formidable entity, evidenced by the band’s second release for this record label. Here, the pianist steers his comrades into cascading rhythmic patterns, often touched with notions of jubilation and solstice.

On many of these works, Wasilewski gravitates the grand scheme of matters with layered chord clusters, acutely intermingled with touching melody lines and gentle harmonics. Yet the big picture features an aggregation of improvisational maneuvers and windswept thematic opuses. The pianist’s graceful execution is also contrasted by soaring intensity.

On the piece "Diamonds and Pearls," the trio injects a folk-ish muse into a Euro-jazz realm, all honed down by bassist Slawomir Kurkiewicz’ nimble lines and drummer Michal Miskiewicz’ ever-so-soft brush-work. But they explore the freer side of matters during "King Korn," where they fuse an understated bop/swing vamp into an asymmetrical discourse.

Wasilewski’s compositional prowess continues with the stunningly beautiful "The Cat," which is built upon a carefree type of gait, and augmented by some high-heat. In effect, the band sports a levitation-like mode of delivery within the softer and more garrulous passages. Otherwise, this unit stands out rather poignantly amid the hordes of jazz piano trios that seemingly sprout faster than weeds growing out of concrete. Don’t miss out folks....

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Marcin Wasilewski Trio
  • CD Title: January
  • Genre: Progressive
  • Year Released: 2008
  • Record Label: ECM Records
  • Musicians: Marcin Wasilewski (piano), Slawomir Kurkiewicz (double-bass), Michal Miskiewicz (drums)
  • Rating: Four Stars
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