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An ECM debut from Masabumi Kikuchi and a last session from the great Paul Motian. Motian and Kikuchi were friends for many years and Paul understood the idiosyncrasies and the wayward charm of the Japanese pianist's highly personal style perhaps better than anyone. The trio - completed by Zen bassist Thomas Morgan - makes new art out of the interactive free rubato ballad. A strangely beautiful album that will surely garner much critical attention.
Masabumi has become totally original ... He just keeps getting better and better -- Ethan Iverson, Do The MathSee all Editorial Reviews
I was pleased to find a number of reviews of this album because I'm sure Kilkuchi is unfamiliar to the vast majority of jazz listeners. Read morePublished 18 months ago by John j Dietsch
I stood on my head for Paul Motian on this one; it was 2am; it was dark; I tried - I cried! Ballad #1 is a good opener and Thomas Morgan's double-bass is right on it to the point... Read morePublished on January 7, 2013 by M. McDaid
What a beautiful recording. One of the last opportunities to hear Paul Motian in the studio, and what terrific bandmates. Read morePublished on September 24, 2012 by David Zehring