Broadbent, Gibson, Smith: Together Again (Ode)

 |   |  1 min read

Broadbent, Gibson, Smith: Continuity
Broadbent, Gibson, Smith: Together Again (Ode)

The title of this album might better be Together Again . . . At Last because it has been far too long since LA-based pianist/composer Alan Broadbent and bassist Putter Smith recorded with Auckland drummer Frank Gibson.  (It might not seem that long because their Over the Fence album of 1990 was reissued on Ode two years ago.)

That said, they fit seamless together once more on this collection which boasts five Broadbent compositions (among them the beautiful Continuity, the title track to a duets album he did with Smith in the early Eighties but here given a mellow midnight reading).

This time out the core trio is augmented by LA saxophonists Chuck Manning and Gary Foster, and singer VR Smith who has a classic, slightly bluesy quality and brings a kind of optimistic ennui to Broadbent's achingly lovely Heart's Desire (which the trio explored on Over the Fence).

Broadbent is a beautifully understated player (evidenced not just in the music but his Grammy collection) and he is a calming influence everywhere here, and as always essays some wonderful tunes (Lee Morgan's Ceora, a springing and swinging Charlie Parker's Relaxin' at Camarillo which lets everyone off the leash).

He is endlessly inventive -- check his playing on I Thought About You which sounds so effortless -- and that inspires these players: they step up for a swinging This One's For Bud, keep it all downkey and laid back for Sweet and Lovely and the final track is a spare We'll Be Together Again -- which we might hope is a statement of intent also.

My preference is always for Broadbent on ballads and here I'm spoiled for choice. But as always, jazz is about the intuitive understanding between the players and what each brings. Here they have brought as much soul and heart as intelligence and technique.

A wonderful, if long overdue, reunion. 

Share It

Your Comments

mark robinson - Mar 15, 2010

Excellent work from Frank as always. I interviewed Frank recently for my radio show on UK Jazz Radio and he was in fine form. I am playing "Ceora" on the show this week as Frank said it was his favorite track from this CD. It is great to see Frank enjoying his music again and leading a strong band with his Sextet project.

post a comment

More from this section   Jazz articles index

Nathan Haines: The Poet's Embrace (Haven/Warners)

Nathan Haines: The Poet's Embrace (Haven/Warners)

At the launch of this classy album recently, the graphic designer Andrew B White -- who had done the cover for both this and Kevin Field's Field of Vision -- made an interesting aside. He noted... > Read more

SABU TOYOZUMI PROFILED (2017): Zen and the art of freedom

SABU TOYOZUMI PROFILED (2017): Zen and the art of freedom

Any number of guitarists would say they were inspired by Jimi Hendrix, but rather fewer drummers. Least of all a Japanese guy in a pop band with the archetypal name of the Samurais. But... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

RECORD STORE DAY 2015: Back to black

RECORD STORE DAY 2015: Back to black

The annual Record Store Day is an opportunity to show the love for vinyl as artists local and international issue good old fashioned records, many of them limited editions and often coming in... > Read more

NURU KANE PROFILED (2013): A colourful tapestry of sound

NURU KANE PROFILED (2013): A colourful tapestry of sound

One of problems world music artists suffer is some preciousness in their audience which would preserve them in amber like an anthropological specimen. They want an artist to remain true to some... > Read more