Rootless, the debut recording from the Corey Kendrick Trio, traverses through multiple expressions, from the wispy tendrils of “A Lullaby for a New Mother” to the funky grooves coursing along “Blues al Pastor.” The group takes the listener on a jaunt through many facets of piano jazz, demonstrating the group’s dynamics as improvisers and torchbearers of classic jazz models.
The slow burning suite “Julian’s Tune” glistens with a melancholic bent in the bass swells as contemplative keys imprint a distinctive impression on the listener’s mind about the trio’s fondness for classic jazz styles and easygoing mannerism. The traipsing gait of the keys strolling along “My New Old Tune” kindles nostalgic jazz embers as the grooving bass hones a toe-tapping beat. The elegantly posed musings of the keys have a smooth saunter paving a path along “Waiting for Midnight” as the lilting notes infuse a shimmery texture into the piece.
The trio’s treatment of Eden Ahbez’s “Nature Boy” takes the track into a world of flailing drumbeats and upbeat keys, administering a palette of sunny notes and elevating movements. The balmy atmospherics of “Misunderstandings” contrast the somber tone of “Along in Michigan” as Kendrick’s keys adjust to the cool simmering beats of Nick Bracewell’s drumming and the soft thumping of Joe Vasquez’s bass. The gentle sonorous of the keys ruminating along “In the Wee Small Hours” give the tune a succor touch as the sophisticated style of the doodling keys through “Yesterdays” incite a cheerful mood.
Combining keen melodic sensibilities with graceful harmonic forms, the Corey Kendrick Trio demonstrates a repertoire that incorporates classic jazz idioms with dynamic improvisations. Their instinct for playing as a solid unit is sharp, showing them to be a paragon of the jazz trio form.
Corey Kendrick – piano, Nick Bracewell – drums, Joe Vasquez – bass
“Blues al Pastor,” “The Unknown/The Unexpected,” “Julian’s Tune,” “My New Old Tune,” “Waiting for Midnight,” “Nature Boy” [music: Eden Ahbez], “Misunderstandings (Remembering I Love You),” “Alone in Michigan,” “In the Wee Small Hours” [Mann/Hilliard], “Yesterdays” [Kern/Harbach], “Lullaby for a New Mother”