Aaron-choulai_span3
December 2009

Aaron Choulai Trio
Ranu
Sunnyside

On his third recording, pianist Aaron Choulai—a legally blind, albino, New Guinea-born twentysomething of startlingly eclectic descent—taps into a reservoir of deep feeling on an ultra-sensitive rendering of “You Go to My Head” and his own introspective compositions. His trio, with bassist Sam Anning and either Ben Vanderwal or Rory McDugall on drums, swings “I’ll Be Seeing You,” during which Choulai adopts a playful, Keith Jarrett-inspired deconstructionist aesthetic. The band also turns in fresh readings of Neil Young’s “Tell Me Why” and Radiohead’s “The Tourist.”

Originally published in December 2009
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