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Saxophonist Joe Lovano became a titan of mainstream jazz throughout the nineties, a musician as willing to please the faithful as take new chances. His adventurous spirit fully flowered once he shifted to ECM and formed Trio Tapestry with likeminded iconoclasts Marilyn Crispell (piano) and Carmen Castaldi (drums). The threesome’s third LP together, Our Daily Bread keeps faith with the band’s prior explorations of spiritual and free jazz Lovano compositions. Check out “Rhythm Spirit,” for example – the three players keep their contributions minimalist, stripping back anything that doesn’t serve the song, while making each note count exactly as it should. “Crystal Ball” swirls around a hazy rhythm, but never floats off into the ether, in part due to the leader’s soulfully stark melody. Opener “All Twelve” and mission statement “The Power of Three” allow each musicians to follow their own paths, straying far but never abandoning the end goal. The title track sounds like a new ballad standard being born, while “Grace Notes” may be the Trio’s most fully developed, gorgeous song yet. Provocative at some points, mesmerizing at others, Our Daily Bread stands a chance of becoming just that for listeners seeking deeper meaning in music.
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