JazzTimes 10: All-Time Great Piano Trio Albums

The power of three is on full display in these groups

The Bad Plus: These Are the Vistas (Columbia, 2003)

Fifteen years ago, this was another mind-blower and, for some, a feather-ruffler. A jazz piano trio covering Blondie? Nirvana? Aphex Twin? Today—thanks in large part to the Bad Plus’ achievements—none of this seems like such a big deal. But even though the controversy is long over, the music in the grooves still makes plain that pianist Ethan Iverson, bassist Reid Anderson, and drummer Dave King pulled off their stylistic coup in marvelous style. Although all three are monster players, King was the biggest revelation back in ’03, coupling nonpareil chops with a restless itch to innovate. Oh, and TBP’s original compositions weren’t bad either.

Preview, buy or download These Are the Vistas on Amazon!

Mac Randall

Mac Randall

Mac Randall has been the editor of JazzTimes since May 2018. Prior to that, he wrote regularly for the magazine. He has written about numerous genres of music for a wide variety of publications over the past 30 years, including Rolling Stone, The New York Times, Vanity Fair, The New York Observer, Mojo, and Guitar Aficionado, and he has worked on the editorial staffs of Musician, LAUNCH (now Yahoo! Music), Guitar One, Teaching Music, Music Alive!, and In Tune Monthly. He is the author of two books, Exit Music: The Radiohead Story and 101 Great Playlists. He lives in New York City.