Eddie Higgins

Haunted Heart

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The lonely cover photo and title of this Japanese import give away most of the story; this is a haunted, introspective album of piano-trio jazz very much indebted to Bill Evans and, to a lesser extent, George Shearing. Veteran Eddie Higgins mostly serves up standards from the Great American Songbook -- "My Funny Valentine," "Someone to Watch Over Me," "I Should Care," "Lush Life," the usual suspects -- in a tasteful, unshowy, often gently swinging way, harmonically locked into the mainstream, occasionally throwing in a gentle quote for humor's sake. Elsewhere, "Israel" forms the core of a "Stolen Moments" sandwich, and "Lover Come Back to Me" is given the token bossa nova treatment. Ray Drummond (bass) and Ben Riley (drums) make up the fine rhythm section, and they never miss a cue.

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