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MP3 Erik van der Luijt - Express Yourself

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MP3 Erik van der Luijt -
Download MP3 Erik van der Luijt - Express Yourself
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A highly distinctive jazz piano trio. Not like anything out there. Rave reviews on this one...

11 MP3 Songs
JAZZ: Traditional Jazz Combo, JAZZ: World Fusion

Details: by Larry Taylor

"Lyrical," describing a musician's style, is overused, but it certainly applies to Dutch pianist Erik van der Luijt's in his new CD, "Express Yourself."
With great help from bassist Branko Teuwen and drummer Victor de Boo, he expresses a wide range of feelings using varied tempos and styles, sensitively rendered.
Having played together in Amsterdam for the past seven years, van der Luijt's trio seamlessly melds, bringing to mind the subtle cohesion of legendary Bill Evans with his trio of the late '50s, which included Scott La Faro on bass and Paul Motian drums. As well, it is apparent that van der Luijt has picked up touches of Evans' style, particularly in his fresh chord voicings and harmonic phrasing.
After the release of trio's first CD two years ago which consisted of its take on standard tunes, the group decided to use originals in this recording to best display its distinctive style. The 11 creative compositions by van der Luijt are a showcase of his talent for melody and show a classical influence, also true with Evans.
Some highlights on the disc: "Corleone" begins in baroque arpeggio fashion giving way to meditative passages accented by de Boo's tasteful drumming; "Keep on Walking" displays van der Luijt's lightly swinging touch against Teuwen's steady bass line; "Havana Blues" brings forth a soulful Afro-Cuban groove; "Me and My Guitar" impresses with van der Luijt's pulsating runs of cascading notes; "Mucho Mucho" features de Boo's up-tempo drumming; and "Ilse and Ellen" shows van der Luijt's skill with a ballad in this hauntingly beautiful tune.
The two standouts are "Minor Changes and "Land of the Triplets." In the first, which features bassist Teuwen, starts quietly and builds to a strong climax and then descends to quiet serenity. In the hard-driving "Triplets," the seamless interplay of the three makes the listener eagerly await the group's next output. by Marc Meyers

With Express Yourself, pianist Erik Van Der Luijt has released an independent, self-produced piano trio album. And it's a very good one, rich with interplay and swing. These musicians are as good as anybody out there, and they're Dutch.
Van Der Luijt reflects a bit of a Keith Jarrett influence, particularly when he reaches for some wide gospel chord voicings. Essentially, however, he's his own man, with a muscular, surging swing and a powerful left hand. Sometimes he'll improvise a single-note line with his left hand while he comps with his right, creating a startling but pleasing effect. Van Der Luijt doesn't quite sound like anyone else out there, which is certainly an asset. He's also an engaging, witty composer. All the tunes here are his, including an odd time signature excursion and a hip blues.
Throughout Express Yourself, the musicians offer exemplary support. Because the trio members listen so closely, even Van Der Luijt's most daring flights sound like logical extensions of his lines. This isn't just a star soloist with solid accompaniment, it's a band, a fully engaged band. Hear how hard they swing, for example, during the aptly-named "Keep On Walking." If you're into piano trios, you'll want to check this one out. by Howard Feildstein

This is an enjoyable album of original compositions performed by the Dutch pianist and his trio. The 11 tracks on the self-produced CD represent a coherent whole, while covering a nice range of moods and tempos. I'll bet the leader has classical training, as a classical feel is evident on the opening track and several uses it well, and is not confined by it - these musicians
definitely have a Jazz sensibility.
The second track reminds me of McCoy Tyner's early 1960s trio dates, with a slightly bluesy feel. Other tracks are more jaunty, showing influences ranging from Chick Corea to Vince Guaraldi. Three ballads are interspersed to nice effect, including one dedicated to the composer's wife and daughter. The trio's interplay is engaging throughout, and I'd recommend this if you're looking for new piano trio sounds.

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