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Lisa Hilton: Underground

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There’s a quote in the press materials touting pianist Lisa Hilton’s Underground that’s borne out by the nine performances on the recording. “I don’t aspire to be Miles, Muddy or Monk,” says Hilton, “but I do reference these beloved composers.” And significant others, as it happens.

Bill Evans’ name didn’t make the cut, but presumably only for alliterative reasons. Hilton’s interpretation of the piano giant’s “B Minor Waltz” is among Underground‘s more alluring treats, so shimmering and spacious that it’s not hard to imagine the composer being delighted by the result. Drummer Nasheet Waits’ artful brushwork and bassist Larry Grenadier’s elegant interlude contribute to the ebb and flow, and along with saxophonist JD Allen, they bring a haunting glow to the following track, “Blue Truth.”

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