Album: James Rhodes, Bullets & Lullabies (Warner Bros)

James Rhodes' populist charm is given free rein in the sleevenotes to this double CD of contrasting approaches to the piano, with plenty of winking references to chemical stimulation.

The Bullets are fast, tricky pieces that Rhodes likens to triple-espresso shots, such as Ravel's Toccata from Le tombeau de Couperin, upon which he aptly muses of Ravel and Gershwin visiting Harlem jazz clubs, and Moszkowski's Etude in F. The Lullabies are a more predictable array of Chopin, Ravel, Rachmaninov and Debussy, but there is no denying the melancholy of Rachmaninov's Prelude in G flat, or the grace of Debussy's "La plus que Lente".

DOWNLOAD THIS Toccata from Le tombeau de Couperin; La plus que Lente; Prelude in G flat; Etude in F