September 25, 2010 12:47 am

Mulgrew Miller: Solo

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Mulgrew Miller

Solo

(Space Time Records)

 

4 star rating

Mulgrew Miller’s unaccompanied piano reflections, captured in performance at Clermont Ferrand’s Jazz en Tête festival in 2000, are a masterclass in the traditional jazz virtues of harmonic development and unflagging tempo.

Miller weaves the fabric of established jazz classics into a rippling, clear-toned monologue of unstinting wit and detailed invention.

“My Old Flame” and “Body and Soul” are lush but unsentimental ballads, his own “Carousel” is a stride-inflected highlight and he is relaxed at the fastest tempos, even while unpicking the dense harmonies of “Giant Steps”.

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