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Eric Reed’s third album exploring the Thelonious Monk songbook captures the original’s stark angular beauty with a hard-swinging quartet and a personal touch.
The ex-Wynton Marsalis pianist has a florid technique, angles of his own invention and a percussive clout that impressively avoids caricature.
Each composition is recast – “Thelonious” close to abstraction, “Pannonica” is gently Latin – but, with saxophonist Seamus Blake’s soft furry tone, Ben Williams’s superb walking bass and drummer Gregory Hutchinson’s occasional wayward thumps, Monk’s rigour and mischief remain firmly in sight.
The Adventurous Monk