Frank Kimbrough – Lullabluebye (Palmetto)
As one of the founders of the Jazz Composers Collective in NYC, Kimbrough is no rookie phenom. With band mates on this trio date, bassist Ben Allison and drummer Matt Wilson, they represent the basic rhythm section of most the recordings coming out of the Collective. Yes, there are other configurations, but these are the main cats and each has recorded copiously as a leader in recent years. The fact that Kimbrough is not that well known to the general public is attributable to his devotion to the body of players rather than taking the spotlight as he does on Lullabluebye. This trio date is much overdue.
It is difficult to compare him to others more familiar as soloists. His approach is both cerebrally impressionistic and intensely melodic. His sense of rhythm propels the music in the way that Bill Evans rhythmic pulse drove his trios. Kimbrough’s concept is freer, however, and extremely fresh sounding. The tightness of the trio is expected because of their long experience together. Ben Allison’s intonation is perfect and his accompaniment and solos are superb. Matt Wilson continues to amaze with his creativity, always augmenting the music.