This is an exceptional recording. Jazz violin fans who lost interest in Jean-Luc Ponty's slickly synthetic fusion will find their faith restored in the French prodigy's musical brilliance. Lovers of the organ trio format will be convinced that Eddy Louiss
is a true master at the keyboard. And the trio as a unit, led by drummer Daniel Humair
, is charged with an electrifying, raw energy -- there is real improvising happening here! The performances took place in a tiny Parisian jazz spot called the Cameleon. Ponty, only in his mid 20s, seems under the spell of Stuff Smith
and John Coltrane
. His sound is swinging, confident and edgy. Louiss does a remarkable job anchoring the trio, simultaneously walking rock solid basslines while freely improvising right hand melodies. Listen to how Eddy transforms an occasional false start from a potential "train wreck" into an interesting rhythmic motif from which to build further improvisations. (A great example occurs coming out of Humair's humorous drum chorus on Miles Davis' "So What.") As a whole, the recording is characterised by a wonderful looseness and lots of risk taking. The tune selection ranges from Gershwin's "Summertime" to Sonny Rollins' "Oleo" and "Sonnymoon for Two." The trio's romp through "Carole's Garden" (written by American pianist, Denny Zeitlin
) is a highlight.