Rodney Kendrick

We Don't Die, We Multiply

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If you're going to carry an album with only bass and drums for accompaniment, you need more than chops. You also need energy, imagination and soul, three qualities with which pianist Rodney Kendrick is plainly overloaded. Instead of going for gossamer Bill Evans-isms like peer Brad Mehldau, Kendrick looks to the darker, knottier pastures of Monk for inspiration. This influence can be heard not just on his fresh interpretation of Monk's "Rhythm-A-Ning," but throughout the album. Bassist Tarus Mateen and drummer Turu Alexander alternate between Trane-like pedal tones and terse, angular rhythms that are the perfect complement to Kendrick's studied dissonance.

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