When in the early 60's Bill Evans, Scott LaFaro and Paul Motian redefined the classic trio of piano, double bass and drums in jazz, it was not only because of the amplitude or modernity of their language, but because they broke the idea of that formation forever as a rhythmic section in which contrabass and drums were, above all, the pianist's support. As the trio revealed itself as a group in which the three instruments provided a leading voice, interacted with the same freedom and democratically built the music, the format gained value and its expressive possibilities multiplied.
Artist: Kaja Draksler / Petter Eldh / Christian Lillinger
Seal: Intakt / Distrijazz
Rating: 9 out of 10
It does not have much to do with the Slovenian pianist Kaja Draksler's music with that of Bill Evans, but this jewel called Punkt.Vrt.Plastik gives a new and portentous turn of the nut to the collective language in the context of the trio, and although the personality of Draksler is one of the most overwhelming that has had the piano in jazz in recent years (not only in Europe, but in all the planet), this record is a shared success between Draksler, the German drummer Christian Lillinger and the Swedish bass player Petter Eldh. The three are great names of the current European scene, and after their first encounter during the legendary convention of improvisers October Meeting of 2016 in Amsterdam were clear that the confluence of their languages had something very special. Eldh says that «from the beginning we felt that we could set the bar very high in a matter of risks to assume, and provide challenging material that would push us to interesting sites», And this represents very well what sounds on the album. What they do together is at all times unexpected and vibrant music, and there is a strong rhythmic component in each of the instruments that generates a hugely surprising musical fabric, with that special energy that only arises when related personalities meet.
Draksler has spent a few years displaying numerous ideas and a varied work that has placed it among the most interesting of today jazz. With only 31 years old he has already recorded a handful of very remarkable albums in different formats: solo, a duet with the also fabulous Eve Risser and Susana Santos Silva or with his main project, which is his octet (in The Lives of Many Others, To Pianos, This Love Y Gledalec respectively, all published by the seal Clean Feed). The group with Lillinger and Eldh is an enriching and refreshing playground for the pianist, and this is undoubtedly one of the greatest albums jazz has given in this 2018 that is already over.