Dave Brubeck will celebrate his 80th birthday next year and he clearly has no plans to rest on his laurels. This latest effort, his third solo project in the last six years, finds him exploring various standards, including his own. The pieces are played in either ballad or medium tempo, and all the trademark Brubeck characteristics are here: his stacking of chords with moving inner voicings on “I’ll Never Smile Again,” the wry and audacious polytonality of “Bye Bye Blues” and the superimposition of one meter upon another on “Harbor Lights.” Few pianists today take so many risks with standard repertoire, and fewer still with such wit, elegance and taste.
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