2 early 70s gems from pianist Steve
Kuhn – back to back on one CD! First up is his amazing self-titled set for Buddah from 1971 – an incredibly inventive album that takes his earlier modern style, and fuses it with a warmer sort mode for the 70s! The approach is quite unique – in that Kuhn's core trio style is augmented both by additional percussion from Airto, plus occasional string quartet backing – for a sound that's fresh and different on each new tune! Some tracks feature Fender Rhodes, but most are acoustic – and Steve
even sings a bit at one point, showing his newly discovered talent for penning a creative lyric. Our favorites are the groovers "The Baby (aka Saharan)" and "Time To Go (aka Tomorrow's Son)" – and the album also features a great version of "Pearlie's Swine (aka The Zoo)". Other tracks include "The Drinking Song", "The Meaning Of Love", and "Silver". Added to that set is another equally brilliant set – one that features all Fender Rhodes throughout, with a combo that includes Steve Swallow
on electric bass, Bruce Ditmas on drums, and Sue Evans on percussion – a lineup that's almost similar to Kuhn's Trance album for ECM, as is the sound of this set! The groove's a bit more open and flowing than Trance, though – with more of those wonderfully rolling numbers that were fast earning Kuhn a name at the time – tracks that are a bit modal, but also have their own unique sense of flow, and a sound that's never nearly as outside as Steve
's work from a few years before. Titles include "Day Dreaming", "A Change Of Face", "Remembering Tomorrow (aka Ulla)", "Last Tango In Paris", "Life's Backward Glance", and "Trance".