Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Tyson Naylor Trio Kosmonauten Songlines 2012

U.S. Release Date 06/06/12

Lyrical cohesion amidst ambiguous chaos while maintaining emotional dept. The debut release from Vancouver's Tyson Naylor's Trio runs far deeper than the typical piano trio. Joining the trio on two tunes is the Vancouver clarinetest Fracois Houle who adds an organic color that helps transform this all ready formidable trio with an added layer of texture pushing the boundaries of the typical piano trio.
Naylor honed his skills for three years in Germany and fully immersing himself into Berlin culture. Upon returning Naylor assembled a trio that seemed to mesh from the very beginning. What is more commonly thought of when a piano trio is mentioned is an accomplished artist that does a riff on some standards that have been essentially played out.

Not here.

Kosmonauten is a diverse sound scape that runs from a variety of styles from stompin' to free jazz which for many is an acquired taste. When Naylor and his trio decide to walk the free jazz tightrope there is a constant sense of urgency to their playing. Working without a harmonic net sounds natural and the listener will in all likelyhood never find themselves lost in a self indulgent sonic exploratory that leads nowhere. "Paolo Conte" is somewhat more free form with an emotional charged harmonic flow. Russell Sholberg's mysterious sounding bass solo adds to a delightful sonic depth of field while the nuances of drummer Skye Brooks act as the musical binder of this eclectic piece while Naylor works this tune and allows a natural development to occur within the work of each ensemble member. "Adrift" is the more creative free form but dialed down just a touch with the finesse of drummer Skye Brooks moving center stage. The odd metered and syncopated Naylor is still on the edge of the free jazz cliff without pushing the listener over the edge. The use of the melodica by Naylor is another captivating use of simple texture as Kosmonauten develops a unique sonic pulse. "Leaves" is an introspective ballad where Naylor sense of melody and lyrical soul shine brightest. Far from the typical piano trio, Kosmonauten embodies everything good about modern jazz piano and where the trio ensemble should be heading. Maturity, depth and texture have this release on point through every tune.

Having reviewed countless piano trios with most falling into the good yet tired category, the Tyson Naylor Trio is a dynamic young trio and Kosmonauten immediately goes in the memorable pile along with 5 huge stars!

Tracks: Paolo Conte; Book It; Allee Der Kosmonauten; Adrift; See It Through; Syzygy; Beelitz; Pkp; Leaves.

Personnel: Tyson Naylor: piano, melodica; Russell Sholberg: bass; Skye Brooks: drums.

Special Guest Francois Houle.