Album Review: Gilad Atzmon – The Spirit of Trane

Gilad Atzmon and

the Orient House Ensemble

The Spirit of Trane

(Freshfield)

 

    What Atzmon does best is intensity and this is in abundance on his latest album. Beginning with the Coltrane/Ellington version of In a Sentimental Mood, the string arrangements of Ros Stephen are gentle and unintrusive with Atzmon inevitably letting rip over an extended coda using and developing the famous Ellington piano ostinato motif.

    The one Atzmon original on the album, Minor Thing, offers a potted history of late Coltrane, beginning with a Crescent-sounding introduction. Frank Harrison’s haunting piano solo in the middle of the track builds intensity and illustrates his gifted technical abilitities.

    A leisurely and playful Giant Steps breaks out into double time and illustrates Atzmon’s mastery of the soprano.

    A 7/4 version of Blue Train is reminiscent of the excellent Kenny Garrett album Pursuance and is one of the highlights of an album that genuinely captures the true spirit of Coltrane.

 

Charlie Anderson