Album Review: Further Explorations [Live] by Chick Corea
Great, Based on 4 Critics
AllMusic - 80 Based on rating 8/10
Although there really hasn't been another pianist quite like Bill Evans since his untimely death in 1980, Chick Corea was probably the one best suited to make this fine and heartfelt tribute album. Corea does several things especially well here: first, he wisely chose two of Evans' most celebrated sidemen (bassist Eddie Gomez and drummer Paul Motian) to join him for the trio date. Second, he does an excellent job of invoking Evans' musical spirit without giving in to the temptation to slavishly imitate his distinctive playing style.
There was a time in the 1970s and early 80s when the jazz-averse, if they wanted to show why jazz couldn't touch the punch of pop or rock, would rest their case on the fragile murmurings of the acoustic piano trio. The hiss of a drummer's brushes, the murmur of apparently endless double-bass solos, seemed to sum up a supper-club music that mainly entertained its practitioners. Jazz fans knew better, but the piano threesome didn't reconnect with big audiences until Keith Jarrett formed his great Standards Trio in 1983.
There’s no point anymore in being surprised when Chick Corea veers from his fusion lane back over to the acoustic lane of the jazz highway. He is, and has always been, a stellar player, capable of playing all over the road. The truth is: when inclined away from fusion gadgetry, Corea is a top-shelf jazz pianist, capable of great imagination from bebop to free playing.
When this trio's performance, captured live in New York, clicks it is utterly magnificent. Alyn Shipton 2012 For two weeks in May 2010 Chick Corea brought this trio into the Blue Note club in New York with the express intention of investigating and extending the trio repertoire established by the late Bill Evans. Paul Motian having been in Evans’ first great trio and Eddie Gomez a member of a subsequent edition for 11 years from 1966, they were well-qualified for the task.