Jazz CD Reviews
Robert Glasper Trio – Canvas (with guests Mark Turner, tenor sax & Vocalist Bilal) – Blue Note
Published on December 9, 2005
Young Houston-born pianist Glaspar is on the rise with his first CD on a major label plus having had an engagement at The Village Vanguard last month. His technique is terrific and his main influence seems to be Chick Corea, but that’s not to say he doesn’t already have a style of his own, embued with a bit of hip-hop, soul and an interesting harmonic sense. Aside from one Corea composition (“Riot”), all the tracks are originals from Glaspar. One of the funkier is titled North Portland and by its tone I venture he isn’t referring to Portland, Maine. But things are sort of laid back throughout – no big paroxysms. Glaspar also varies the sound of his band by first performing three of the tracks on Fender Rhodes rather than acoustic piano, and one (“Chant”) on the thumb piano; and second by inviting saxist Turner to blow on two of the tracks and singer Bilal to come aboard on two others. His bassist Vicente Archer and drummer Damion Reid provide good support, and sonics are good.
Tracks; Rise and Shine, Canvas, Portrait of an Angel, Enoch’s Meditation, Centelude, Jelly’s Da Beener, Chant, Riot, North Portland, I Remember.
– John Henry