Steve Kuhn, Pastorale

Amelia Raitt

By Amelia Raitt

on 04.22.11 in Reviews

Steve Kuhn's never been an easy one to pin down. His jazz piano has been heard in groups led by John Coltrane, Stan Getz and Art Farmer, as well as offering up support to Sheila Jordan and leading his own group since the mid-'80s. In so doing, when you picked up a Kuhn disc, it was a hard to know what to expect. (A little post-bop over here, a little Latin Jazz there.) Pastorale, however, hews closely to Kuhn's bop credentials, as he and his trio, take on a number of standards (Henri Mancini's "Charade," Michel Legrand's "Once Upon a Summertime") as well as two originals. For a taste of what's in store, take a listen to Kuhn's title track, wherein the group glides up and down the scale, gradually sliding into a groove. It's this smoothness that pervades on Pastorale, a release that serves as another fascinating piece of Kuhn's vibrant mosaic-like career.