Japanese-born Hiromi Uehara is well-known for her great technique, speed and also eloquent live performance style. Her style has caught the attention of jazz icons like Chick Corea and his Return to Forever bassist Stanley Clarke, who have both cut albums with her in recent years.
Uehara returns to form as a bandleader with “Move,” an album made in collaboration with Anthony Jackson (bass) and Simon Phillips (bass drum), two musicians who have broad experience both in the jazz and pop worlds. “Move” differs from her earlier releases because she explores a varied amount of sounds, going with contemporary tunes like the uptempo title track and the rock-tinged “Endeavor,” the latter of which evokes more of a jazz-rock feel with progressive notes. “Rainmaker” has more of a classical influence, as she explores her piano’s keys with gusto while Phillips and Jackson provide a subtle but highly effective backbeat. Also notable is “Suite Escapism: Fantasy,” a beautiful melody with psychedelic overtones that brings to mind Paul McCartney’s early solo work.
“Move” shows Hiromi’s evolution both as a composer and a musician. She no longer tends to do the very electric material of her earlier career (though that is still very present), but she now reaches out a more diverse palate of sounds. (Ernest Barteldes)
Hiromi: The Trio Project