Album: Brad Mehldau Trio, Ode (Nonesuch)

 

While it can be easier to admire pianist Mehldau than to love him – he's too damn perfect for that – this first studio release for seven years by his trio of Larry Grenadier on bass and Jeff Ballard on drums confirms their status as the world leaders of swinging small-group jazz.

The material is all Mehldau's and quality varies from the standing ovations of the opening and closing tunes to lesser tricked-up vamps, but bass and drums groove superbly throughout.

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