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Les trinitaires

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Album Review

Les Trinitaires finds master composer Andrew Hill alone at the piano in a small French club just 18 months before recording his well-regarded ensemble recording Dusk. This is a stark, moody set, not the place to begin to explore Hill's prickly work with its angular, elusive melodies. His solo presentation is stark and ruminative. For those already engaged with his work, this offers a glimpse of the skeletal foundations of compositions, especially "Dusk" and "15/8," which would later appear on Dusk in full ensemble form. These versions of the compositions are similar to seeing the sketches made for an oil painting. The session also includes two newly minted compositions, "Metz" and "Labyrinth," which were written during his stay at the club. Hill's rendering of the two standards "What's New?" and "I'll Be Seeing You" with their dark, dense altered chords and oddly loping left-hand figures give insights into this important composer's sonic world.


Born: June 30, 1937 in Chicago, IL

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

Andrew Hill was a great and even groundbreaking composer and pianist, yet the relatively circumscribed scale of his innovations might have originally caused him to get lost in the shuffle of the '60s free jazz revolution. While many of his contemporaries were totally jettisoning the rhythmic and harmonic techniques of bop and hard bop, Hill worked to extend their possibilities; his was a revolution from within. Much of the most compelling '60s jazz was nearly aleatoric; Hill, on the other hand, exhibited...
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Les trinitaires, Andrew Hill
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