Liner note author Ira Gitler writes that this was originally conceived as a ballad session. In its slightly more varied final form, Special Encounter maintains that twilight mood. Italian pianist Pieranunzi splits song credits with his bassist, Charlie Haden, and tosses in a few standards for good measure. With the exception of a briskly paced run through Haden’s “Waltz for Ruth,” which sticks out a bit, Pieranunzi upholds a satisfyingly gentle pace, preferring to argue with phrasing and pith.
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