Adam Kromelow Trio -][- Young Blood [Zoho, 2012 | Review]
As we travel these extensive and sometimes rigorous pathways of jazz, our ultimate goal it appears to discover and sample not only classic gems but probe the possibilities of what’s available in the abyss of today’s spirited and forthcoming voices in this idiom as well. On this outing, I recently met the voice of pianist-composer Adam Kromelow and his impressive Trio and debut simply titled “Young Blood.”
From the onset, I was immediately drawn into his technical mobility and insightful approach to the piano and composition configuration and arrangements. His skilled and explosive technique glides from side to side on the keys of the piano he aptly borrows from the chambers of his conservatory-training to inexhaustibly excel on nine mind-altering compositions produced by Grammy Award Winning musician [pianist] and composer Arturo O’Farrill.
Kromelow features two of his college-mates Raviv Markovitz on bass with Jason Burger on drums, to bring life this this stunning collection. The Trio met as undergrads at Columbia University, later they developed and honed their skills as musicians at Manhattan School of Music. As you can imagine, what a surprise it must have been to meet again to rejuvenate their collective voices to record this album.
Six of the nine pieces available are originals written by Kromelow, the Trio decided to expand their unique and diverse voice by meeting the challenge and adapted songs such as “Across The Universe” by Lennon & McCartney, the extraordinary “Brilliant Corners” by Monk and Peter Gabriel’s “Mercy Street.” Of course, from the perception of a fusionist this must be a dream come true with O’Farrill in the production chair adds his insight and maturity to these selections.
“Black Mamba” the opener, rumbles with a chorus what seems to enveloped by their endless agility and impeccable melodies exhibited by this valiant threesome. Their fluidity is absolutely matchless, as musician’s they infuse a host of intense tones and flavors to accent their musical influences into the well of this music as this ensemble tirelessly stretches the boundaries of our imagination as listeners with this collection.
At a glance, a sweet tune called “Bushido” [which in Japanese means “Way of Warrior”] captivated me merely because it was written by Kromelow at thirteen. Amazingly this triumphant piece flows freely with two creative elements as the focal point. At the beginning, their intimate voicings inhabit the space with beautiful textures and structure strung together. Later the group’s interplay growls rapidly sonically to align itself with animated voices that melodically change the shape of this gem is surrounded by uplifting melodies!
Compositionally, “Young Blood” is occupied with an abundant of surprises as demonstrated on the heavily induced improvisation signatures embedded on “Mojo, Undercurrent and Mr. Pokey.” Meanwhile the Trio strategically explores these gems intelligently in a traditional framework to illustrate why their not only submissive but imaginative with their expansive voicings to populate this sometimes unforgiving nature of this music effortlessly.
In retrospect, we have access to a staggering amount of young, vivacious, tenacious and often times exceedingly gifted musicians to draw from. This is evident with the closer “Upgrade,” the ensemble grinds their way through the fabric of this song with an adventurous and ambitious spirit to elevate and amplify their unparalleled voices as musicians to conclude this mesmerizing journey on this collection of unwavering music appropriately titled “Young Blood” by the incomparable Adam Kromelow Trio.
–Review by Rob Young | Urban Flux Media