Rue de Seine
What a wonderful record. Martial Solal, maybe the finest jazz pianist in Europe, teams up with Dave Douglas, one of jazz’s most intuitive trumpeters, and the results are wholly satisfying. These men are intellectual players, but they betray plenty of emotion here and interact so well that you get the feeling they could finish each other’s sentences—in English or in French.
The musicians offer three compositions apiece; the remaining four are standards. They kick things off with a sprightly, refreshing “July Shower,” which finds Douglas’ muted trumpet dancing all over Solal’s attack. The mood turns serious for the hymn “Blues to Steve Lacy,” with Douglas blowing plaintively against the dirge of the dragging piano. A playful and mischievous “34 Bar Blues” follows, and then Solal takes it solo on Douglas’ pretty tune “For Suzannah.”
Once the newer tunes are out of the way, the duo turns its attention to standards. Their interpretation of “Body and Soul” is lovely, and their “Here’s That Rainy Day” is full of grace. Things conclude with a gorgeous reading of “All the Things You Are,” which features a nice, fat tone from Douglas. These guys obviously enjoy playing with each other. Luckily they let us in on their intimate exchange.