Album: Andy Sheppard, Michel Benita, Sebastian Rochford, Trio Libero (ECM)

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The Independent Culture

Saxophonist Sheppard's chirpy tone and improvisatory alertness have made him a master of his trade for years but this co-op trio with bassist Benita and drummer Rochford – who strokes skins in the intensely musical manner of Paul Motian – puts him on a whole new level.

All contribute material, and there's a lovely, oblique version of "I'm Always Chasing Rainbows", but the entire album is suffused with a spacious, questing feel that begs for further development in live performance.