- Artist: Lower Left
- Album released in 2013
- Genre: Jazz
Mikan Zlatkovich, Bill Andrews and Barry Farrar, the piano/bass/drum trio collectively known as Lower Left have been playing together for 10 years, and it shows in the interplay on this new release Just Sayin'.
Serbian born Zlatkovich is both a virtuoso improviser and a masterful interpreter, and the support from Andrews and Farrar is lock-tight throughout.
Opening with Monk's "Green Chimneys," the pianist is all about ebullient swing over the rope-thick textures of the bass and Farrar's precise ride-cymbal subdivisions. Zlatkovich's rhythmically-charged effusions make the piece soar into a higher plane.
An arresting a cappella piano intro with classical flourishes sets up the Zlatkovich original "This Is For Horace," which carries the weight of a jazz classic, even if it reminds me as much of McCoy Tyner as it does Horace Silver. Zlatkovich is all over this -- wielding explosive ostinati in the left hand and cascading ideas in the right. Farrar churns up the heat on the vamp.
There are creative arrangements everywhere, from the bass unison connections on "Wave," to the Bernard Purdie groove and groaning Andrews whole-notes on "Nostalgia In Times Square," which gets lashed together tightly by the pianist's blues fluency.
Zlatkovich has an extremely lyrical capacity, and when he's so inclined, can wax as rhapsodic as the best of them -- as his deft touch on "Summer Night," ably demonstrates.