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Trichotomy – The Gentle War

Trichotomy, The Gentle War

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 2 out of 5

AUSTRALIAN piano jazz trio Trichotomy release The Gentle War as the follow-up to their critically acclaimed Naim Jazz debut Variations and duly disappoint.

Described as an aural reflection of the band’s music that brings a rockier edge to the mix without compromising the beauty of their piano sound, it’s an often directionless collection of instrumentals that fail to add up to a satisfying whole.

Mind you, by their own admission, the album is intended to be focused around Sean Foran’s compositions, which actively seek to balance heavily notated sections with completely free improvisations, thereby allowing the trio’s ideas to develop naturally.

A bad example of this is the album closer Not According To Plan, which clocks in at a mighty seven plus minutes, and seems to take an eternity to get anywhere. There’s no real sense of structure, even though some of the melancholy piano work does contain a stark beauty.

Far snappier and more appealing is album opener and former single Chase, which has a playful sense of rhythm, and which provides an appealing backdrop to the trio’s playful accompanying video featuring them attempting to stage a robbery of Rolf Harris’s wobble board.

But with tracks like Blues For The Space emerging as more self-indulgent and (at over eight minutes) unnecessarily long, and Shut Up inviting you to feel the same way towards it, this collection of instrumentals systematically annoys more than it inspires.

It’s strictly for fans of piano jazz and acts like the Neil Cowley Trio and Acoustic Ladyland only.

Download picks: Chasing Time, Don’t You Know Me, Colourful Day, Life Worth Living, Clara

Track listing:

  1. Chase
  2. Wrestle
  3. Blues For The Space
  4. The Gentle War
  5. Cute
  6. Sync
  7. Shut Up
  8. Not According To Plan

  1. Disagree. These guys are great. Don’t be put off by this review.

    Mark    Jan 28    #