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Metheny / Mehldau

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Audio CD, September 12, 2006
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$9.48 $3.38

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

For Brad Mehldau, this collaboration started at that "life-changing moment" when, as a 13-year-old, a friend played him "Are You Going With Me" from the Pat Methany Group's 1982 live double-album, Travels. Years later, Pat Methany heard "Chill" from saxophonist Joshua Redman's 1994 album Moodswing that featured Brad Mehldau on piano. Since, the two artists have forged an artistic partnership based on shared inspiration, not just mutual admiration. This album features music by both Methany and Mehldau, and was recorded at Right Track Studio (NYC) in December of 2005.

This is a dream pairing: Pat Metheny, the Baby Boomer guitar god whose musical palette embraces everything from Ornette Coleman to contemporary jazz, teams with pianist Brad Mehldau, the brooding Gen X prince of the piano on the verge of becoming himself. After admiring each other for years, they're now on the same label, and this dynamic duel extends their mutual admiration into a very personal and simpatico release that recalls the intimacy of that 1960s Jim Hall/Bill Evans masterpiece, Undercurrent. Save for Mehldau's bandmates drummer Jeff Ballard and bassist Larry Grenadier forming a quartet on the bop-mazed "Ring of Life" and the Afro-Caribbean cadences of "Say the Brother's Name," it's two for the road on the rest of the recording. When you hear selections like "Unrequited," "Ahmid-6," and "Make Peace," you know that this CD is only the start of something big from these two artists. --Eugene Holley, Jr.

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
  1. Unrequited 4:59$1.29  Buy MP3 
  2. Ahmid-6 6:33$1.29  Buy MP3 
  3. Summer Day 6:21$1.29  Buy MP3 
  4. Ring of Life 7:32$1.29  Buy MP3 
  5. Legend 6:57$1.29  Buy MP3 
  6. Find Me in Your Dreams 6:05$1.29  Buy MP3 
  7. Say the Brother's Name 7:10$1.29  Buy MP3 
  8. Bachelor's III 7:20$1.29  Buy MP3 
  9. Annie's Bittersweet Cake 5:27$1.29  Buy MP3 
10. Make Peace 7:06$1.29  Buy MP3 

Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 12, 2006)
  • Original Release Date: 2006
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Nonesuch
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #111,642 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Baz on February 16, 2007
Format: Audio CD
I wonder if the folks who give this album less than five stars are listening to the same ablum as I have for the past week commuting to work and back... Obviously not. I've lost count of the number of times I've listened to this and there's still plenty to discover and get the juices flowing. One thing seems clear; both guys bring their own superb musicianship and individuality to the album and the whole is without doubt greater than the sum of the parts - and minus any gratuitous noodling or empty virtuosity (perish the thought). Just great jazz from two of the best. One of my albums for the desert island. Very highly recommended. More, please...
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52 of 64 people found the following review helpful By Jan P. Dennis on September 13, 2006
Format: Audio CD
. . . and I must say, I like it a WHOLE LOT, what really blows me away are the two quartet numbers which add Larry Grenadier (bass) and Jeff Ballard (drums), maybe the smartest rhythm team on the planet (unless it's Ben Allison and Ballard). Is this the new PMG group for the new century, or what? These four guys mesh magically, even more so than the group on which I first encountered PMG, their great disc Off Ramp.

For one thing, they're all peers in a way that, great as they are, Lyle Mays, and whoever's on bass and drums will never be Metheny's peers. In the liner notes to this disc, Mehldau tells about how at 17 he first heard Metheny, and it forever changed him. Well, the acolyte is now the equal: If anything, Mehldau has surpassed his idol.

For me, Jeff Ballard defines smart, 21st century drumming. Whatever session he's on, he lifts it to the next level, be it his longtime Medicine Wheel gig, his work on the Elastic Band, his duo with Frank Kimbrough, The Willow, or his trio gig with Grenadier and Mark Turner, Fly.

Larry Grenadier, of course, has played with both Metheny and Mehldau before, but never in the same group. And he and Ballard were part of Mehldau's Day Is Done trio. So these guys need no introduction. That they nearly telepathically interact should come as no surprise. What IS a surprise, however, is how entirely natural they sound together, as if they'd all been playing as a unit for a couple decades.

But, that said, this disc is primarily a duo outing. How does it succeed on that level? Quite magnificently, thank you. Mehldau and Metheny seem to have their own kind of telepathy, perhaps even more magical, in its own way, than the quartet.
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20 of 23 people found the following review helpful By CharlieGreene on January 17, 2007
Format: Audio CD
When I first heard that Pat and Brad were making an album together it was like WOW, I can't wait. I guess my expectations were way too high, (given the incredible tallent of both). So when I first listened to it, it was strange, I felt something missing. Then I heard it again, and again. It started to warm, but never caught fire.

So I had to break it apart. On Mehldau side, very good. On Metheny side, very good but as stand alone, it missses in retrospect (comparing this project to other collaborations, like say the Jim Hall album, Question and Answer and Rejoicing).

But in no way is this an inferior album, the playing and writting is superb.

I would recommend it, but Pat and Brad have better.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By power on May 23, 2007
Format: Audio CD
The immediate question here is does this seemingly musical marriage made in heaven live up to expectation?

The answer is a resounding yes for the alchemy between these players is evident from the first note.

Curiously their paths have crossed over the past ten years without there being the opportunity to play together.

Metheny first heard of Mehldau via saxophonist Joshua Redman (whose father the great tenor saxophonist Dewey Redman sadly passed away this week)who was about to take on the young pianist, while Mehldau was a long-time admirer of Metheny since he started listening to music.

What impresses here is the sheer ease with which the two play and in such a sophisticated and engaging manner.

The freshness of 'Say the Brother's name', one of two terrific quartet numbers with the infectious accompaniment of Larry Grenadier and Jeff Ballard, finds Metheny's guitar at its most euphoric since the historical trio sessions with Roy Haynes and Dave Holland from 1989.

Compositionally Metheny takes the lion's share with seven pieces while Mehldau adds three of his own.

One would ideally have liked a double album where the quartet had an entire disc devoted to its ensemble playing and it is only this slight imbalance between duo and quartet that makes this recording marginally short of a full five stars.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Olukayode Balogun on September 23, 2006
Format: Audio CD
That's the only way I can describe this CD. It literally compelled me to sit still and listen. Usually I can listen to a new CD in the background while I work but no, with this one I had to stop everything, sit down and listen.

These two are established giants in jazz - Metheny in guitar and with the Pat Metheny Group and Mehldau in piano and with the Brad Mehldau trio. They speak on the inner sleeve notes of having been huge fans of each other; Metheny says the first time he heard Mehldau's solo on the song "Chill" (from the Joshua Redman Quartet CD "MoodSwing") on his car radio, he had to pull over in his car to listen to it. I reviewed that record just recently so I know what he speaks about. For me personally, it was Mehldau's work on John Scofield's album "Works For Me" that made me stand up and take notice. From the solo on the first song "I'll Catch You", I was like, wow. I've been a huge Brad's fan ever since.

Mehldau on the other hand woke up to Metheny after hearing the live version of "Are You Going With Me?" on the PMG CD "Travels". Everything Metheny does is magic to me so again, I could identify.

Pat writes seven out of the ten songs, Brad the other three. On eight out of the ten they play as a duo and on the other two - "Ring of Life" (a real swinger, with Pat on guitar synth) and "Say The Brother's Name", they form a quartet with Larry Grenadier on bass and Jeff Ballard on drums. (Grenadier and Ballard formed the trio with Mehldau on last year's "Day Is Done".)

Each song is a delight and it's really interesting to see how the two almost seem to articulate their mutual respect for each other in the playing. No one tries to outplay the other and I almost get the sense that they support each other through their respective solos.
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Topic From this Discussion
Fix spelling error in editorial review
Actually, twice.
Sep 9, 2006 by a music fan |  See all 3 posts
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