Laurent DeWilde - The Present

Nocturne NTCD 397 | ***
Laurent deWilde (p), Darryl Hall (b), Laurent Robin and Dion Parson (d). Rec. date not given

There is something of the Renaissance Man about the French pianist Laurent deWilde, who in 1996 wrote a highly acclaimed biography of Thelonious Monk, named Best Book of the Year by the Academie du Jazz. He called it “a diversion in a mad life,” and revealed his deep knowledge and love of jazz.
Laurent DeWilde - The Present
That also comes through on The Present which sees him past his electronic phase on albums such as Time Changes to a more orthodox role for piano trio – or quartet on ‘Fleurette Africaine’ and ‘The Club’ with the addition of a second drummer Dion Parson.

Broken rhythms are a feature of the title track which is contrasted by a straight ahead passage, while ‘Move On’ is a pensive mood piece that patiently unfurls over almost 10 minutes of quietly probing melodic improvisation. It’s in contrast to the explicit rhythms of ‘The Club’, but again deWilde resists the urge to leap headlong into the rhythmic surge, with a solo of great restraint.

That’s perhaps the key to this album; deWilde is in no hurry to "prove" anything, but instead shape the music into meaningful statements, such as ‘Late Late Blues’ which is a model of both restraint and economy. The album comes with a video of ‘The Present’. Review: Stuart Nicholson

This review is taken from Jazzwise Issue #109, to read the most comprehensive review section of jazz and beyond and receive a  Free CD, subscribe here…

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