A piano trio, a good one, can come from anywhere. The cleverness, the connecting, the perfect sense of anchoring, the snappiness that makes the piano-bass-drums trio such a classic sound even when it moves forward, it all comes from signature, and there are signatures everywhere. New Orleans signature sounds have a ragtag sense to them, rough around the edges from centuries of lovingly performing the act of loving. That kind of signature can make for a pretty good piano-bass-drums trio. Extended — Oscar Rossignoli on piano, Matt Booth on bass, and Brad Webb on drums — have all the attributes of a clever New Orleans piano-bass-drums trio. (And it’s part of my signature that I’m a sucker for those.)
Their debut self-titled album which releases March 7th on Breakfast for Dinner Records is a collection of ten original compositions that fit together well. They’re a pleasure to hear, rounding all the corners of what one expects of a trio of this sort. The three have been part of the New Orleans scene for years in various configurations. This contemporary jazz scene does what works, and these songs are indicative of this. It’s not an overcomplicated album because it’s composed together as a group with a harmonious sense to it. Rossignoli on piano constantly shimmers, letting each and every note of each and every chord have its voice heard. Booth on bass, flows as he anchors. Webb on drums keeps the pocket but his decisions there embrace what sounds best more than what’s flashiest. There’s a sense among these three of guys who have worked this out well live quite well before making it to the studio version.
The songs are tight, going where they need to go and doing them well, but certainly still sounding like nothing you’ve heard before. It’s nice having a piano trio album of original compositions from young pros who are of their time who found a configuration that fits. Their creations together are a joy to listen to, not barnburners, but certainly not throwing pasta at the wall to see what sticks. “Never Odd or Even” gallops joyfully. “Like That” features Booth soloing for a stretch with a voice that doesn’t just stand on its own but stands in the middle of a bustling crowd and gathers its attention with intention. “Before Grey” hearkens to some old Catholic hymn, as if church bells are ringing in the distance. Webb’s solo near the end of “Neck and Neck” felt earned, though I wish it could be longer.
This is a self-titled debut from a contemporary jazz trio who have played music for a while in the ever interesting New Orleans scene. Extended is a trio who shows promise, and certainly have been a delight to keep in my rotation for a while.
Extendedthe self-titled debut album of pianist Oscar Rossignoli, bassist Matt Booth, and drummer Brad Webb, is out March 7th on Breakfast for Dinner Records. You can pre-order it on their Bandcamp.
oscar rossignoli: piano
matt booth: bass
brad webb: drums
produced by extended and jeff albert
recorded by rick nelson at marigny opera house, new orleans, la in july 2016
mixed and mastered by jeff albert
art design by dan barrett
photos by brad webb
Nextbop Editor-in-Chief Anthony Dean-Harris hosts the modern jazz radio show, The Line-Up, Fridays at 9pm CST on 91.7 FM KRTU San Antonio and is also a contributing writer to DownBeat Magazine and the San Antonio Current.