Yaron Herman Trio

Follow the White Rabbit

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Yaron Herman blends elements of jazz, classical, and the music of his native Israel in this intriguing trio session with bassist Chris Tordini and drummer Tommy Crane. The trio's delicious opener is "Follow the White Rabbit," which makes deft use of repeated riffs and often seems inspired by Keith Jarrett's trio recordings. His tense "Saturn Returns" defies categorization, as it freely draws from many diverse styles. Herman's solo piano vehicle "Cadenza" is dramatic with classical overtones, yet it sounds as if it were improvised on the spot in the studio. While there are no standards, Herman's inspired choice and tender interpretation of the neglected gem "Baby Mine" -- written by Frank Churchill and Ned Washington for the Disney film Dumbo -- will likely provoke others to seek overlooked tunes from other Disney musicals. Like many musicians of his generation, Herman is open to exploring rock as well. He has some success interpreting Radiohead's lyrical "No Surprises," though the repetitious nature of the late Kurt Cobain's "Heart Shaped Box" keeps it from reaching a similar peak, in spite of the pianist's best efforts. Recommended.

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