Michael Gallant Trio: Completely

After logging time as an editor for Keyboard magazine and a contributing writer for DownBeat, Michael Gallant has returned to his primary focus of the piano and makes his recording debut with this trio set. His experience playing traditional jazz, including a brief stint in the Preservation Hall band, comes across in the funky second-line grooves that permeate many of his original compositions. Linda Oh thumps out a solid backbeat on both acoustic and electric basses, locking in tightly with drummer Chris Infusino. In the studio, Gallant set up an electric keyboard next to his acoustic, allowing him to add gritty accents that occasionally evoke the swirl of a Leslie cabinet and, most notably, give the appropriate thrust to a cover of Pearl Jam’s “Go.” The effort succeeds, as do more accessible, tuneful moments like “Problem With the Game” and “Completely,” the latter a melody in search of a lyric.