Tom Bancroft: Trio Red

Lucid Dreamers


BRIAN Morton makes a great point in his liner note for this second album from drummer Tom Bancroft’s excellent contribution to jazz’s piano trio tradition about the near-disappearance of the working band in today’s jazz scene.

It’s hard to keep any sense of continuity in such straitened times and yet three years on from its debut and with only occasional live appearances since then, Trio Red always sounds like three musicians engaged in an ongoing conversation. Much of this is due to Bancroft’s superbly musical approach to drumming and his natural way of including the listener, even in his more abstract concepts, although his partners, pianist Tom Cawley and bassist Per Zanussi are expert communicators too.

Each of these ten pieces presents its own strong character, along the way incorporating playfulness, quiet profoundness, robust swing, small but very effective details, a wealth of sonic ideas, subtle solo building, and on Bancroft’s title track, a gift for melody that conjures rich images and emotion in very few notes.

Rob Adams