The trio of guitarist John Stein, bassist John Lockwood, and drummer Yoron Israel is so tight and tasteful during these nine numbers that it is surprising to find out that Stein and Israel first met at the initial session that resulted in this CD. The close communication and interplay of the musicians makes this sound very much like a working band. Stein has a quiet and appealing sound and, as with Lockwood and Israel, he is expert at leaving space and making every note count. The musicians explore eight straight-ahead standards (the biggest surprise is the brisk pace given "Goodbye") and Stein's minor blues "Eleanor's Folly" with a solid sense of swing, connected to 1950s and '60s jazz but not confined to emulating the past. Clearly, John Stein (who takes "Polka Dots and Moonbeams" as an unaccompanied solo) deserves to be much better known; Jim Hall fans in particular will enjoy his sound and approach.