Bob Ravenscroft Trio
Bob Ravenscroft's latest, Intersections I, finds the accomplished pianist resting comfortably in what intimidates so many jazz cats: space. This modern-jazz album begins with "Dreams," a 14-minute tune that sets the moody formula for the Ravenscroft originals and rests between the stretched-out grooves of Keith Jarrett's famed trio and free-jazz cramming assassins. Ravenscroft's bold, full passages on his custom nine-foot piano — an instrument designed and built by Scottsdale's Spreeman Piano Innovations and aptly named the "Ravenscroft" — are never short of passion and energy. And with the help of Steve Millhouse's rich, heavy bass lines and percussionist Rob Schuh (who explores the contours of his kit with various drum whackers), the disc retains a spontaneity despite the minimalism — especially on "Velocities" — that's perfect for the ponderer. From pleasing beginning to savory end, the Scottsdale-based musician demonstrates that space really is the place.
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