This outing by the David Leonhardt Trio was completed in one four-hour session. The group wanted to attain the spirit of a live performance, with plenty of single takes and lots of spontaneous creativity.
The result? Total success. It is one of Leonhardt's finest offerings and his trio mates of Lewis Nash on drums and Peter Washington on bass present a package of tasty music that's flawless in execution and perfectly paced.
Leonhardt's light and airy touch is evident from the start on "Day in the Life of a Fool," which moves beautifully into his original "Another Kentucky Sunset," that centers on a sensitive piano reading with tour de force work by Nash.
"Sao Paulo Samba" is a free-wheeling, uptempo romp, a salsa-tinged showpiece for Leonhardt's improvisantional skills with some outstanding drum work by Washington. But the group can switch gears and become positively poetic, with notes that aim straight for the heart while still delighting the mind. For proof, check out Leonhardt's "Soundless Sky."
Pacing is everything. The tunes move the listener from cooking sambas and bluesy tunes to lyrical ballads. The final two tunes, though, are worth the price of admission. The Mercer-Mandel masterpiece "Emily" is stretched and pulled into something greater than the sum of its parts and the perfect finale, Miles' "Solar," which opens with a fine drum and cymbal solo by Nash, is a five-star cap on a recording that truly demonstrates that the piano trio is alive, well and still full of imaginative expression.