Reviews / Union Tribune San Diego

By George Varga:

IMG_4615San Diego jazz pianist Danny Green has been collaborating with bassist Justin Grinnell and drummer Julien Cantelm for nearly five years, and it shows.

Witness the trio’s fine new OA2 Records album “After the Calm,” easily Green’s most assured work to date. Ten songs strong, it places an equal emphasis on composition, performance and the increasingly evolved musical interaction and calibration these three instrumentalists have developed.

As a result, while Green, Grinell and Cantelm all have memorable moments on “After the Calm,” it’s as a unit that they most impress. Their sensitivity to one another enables them to negotiate intricate passages with ease and to neatly execute pinpoint shifts in direction and dynamics. That rapport is a key to their ability to inject freshness into a jazz piano trio tradition that dates back more than 80 years.

Now 33, Green’s influences and reference points are readily apparent, including such piano giants as Chick Corea, Bill Evans, Hank Jones and Michel Camilo. But he builds on them nicely and is well on his way to developing his own voice.

From zigzagging, post-bop romps, lush ballads and urbane blues to Argentine tango and Brazilian choro, Green and his trio perform with poise and verve. Their Saturday CD-release gig at The Loft@UCSD should be an event worth celebrating.

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