Dawn Clement: Hush

Seattle-based pianist-composer Dawn Clement makes a strong debut as a leader on Hush (Conduit). A collection of thoughtful originals and well-chosen covers (Ellington-Strayhorn’s “The Star-Crossed Lovers,” Astor Piazzolla’s “Coral,” Tom Waits’ “Midnight Lullaby”), it features the emerging artist in solo, duo, trio and quartet settings. Most noteworthy of her own compositions are the eccentrically swinging “Big Fat Blues,” her darkly beautiful ballad “Venus” and the provocative free piece “Tension Tamer.” Also dig her turbulent, risk-taking interpretation of the standard “Alone Together.” This release marks the Dawn-ing of a new age in Seattle jazz.