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Taurey Butler - One of the Others (Justin Time)

4 October 2022

Born in New Jersey and based in Montreal, pianist Taurey Butler plays in a style that bespeaks a couple of other locales: New York and New Orleans. Powered by bassist Morgan Moore and drummer Wali Muhammed, “On the Natch” and the title tune both indicate a familiarity with second-line rhythms and their adaptation to swing, while the mildly funky bop of “Sisyphean Task” and the lush melodicism of “Laini’s Love” work both sides of the urban experience. The trio prove themselves fine interpreters as well, as easily at home with Cole Porter’s “What is This Thing Called Love?” as with Stevie Wonder’s “I Can Only Be Me.” Butler brings a special touch to the Beatles’s “Can’t Buy Me Love,” adapting the banging rocker into a gorgeous ballad by bringing out the eyes of its melody. Drawing heavily from the bebop and hard bop eras, with some Big Easy spice in his rhythms, Butler concerns himself on One of the Others less with a youthful interest in pushing his boundaries than with working brilliantly within established tradition.