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Jason Lindner: Ab Aeterno

The music of pianist Jason Lindner’s new project, Ab Aeterno, seems to come from everywhere-Latin America, Africa, the Middle East and of course the American jazz aesthetic. This has a lot to do with the fact that the members of Lindner’s trio come from three continents. Lindner grew up in Brooklyn, bassist Omer Avital comes from Israel, and percussionist Luisito Quintero is from Venezuela. Talk about your pan-cultural jazz.

Quintero plays a panoply of Latin and African percussion, Avital plucks both the contrabass and the oud, and Lindner brings his melodica and mbira along for the ride. Some of the tunes lean more toward one culture or another-“G-Point” is unabashedly Latin, the title track is overtly Middle Eastern, “New Church” is right out of the American gospel tradition, and “Renacimiento” ends up sounding Cape Verdean-but much of the music comes out of the group’s great blender. Consider “Song for Amos.” Lindner’s soft, neo-classical piano opens the 12-minute opus like a storm brewing. A groove develops, and he massages the lower end of the keyboard as Avital’s bass and Quintero’s percussion grow ever more tempestuous. Fierce piano runs and wrist-damaging percussive work ensue before the whole things climaxes with a beautiful bass solo. Like the rest of the album, it brims with energy and sparkles with originality.

Originally Published