A boldfaced quote from the late Japanese film director Akira Kurosawa—“The role of the artist is to not look away”—adorns the inside cover of the CD version of pianist Randy Ingram’s fourth album, a trio set featuring Drew Gress on bass and Jochen Rueckert on drums. The album, as its title and that quote suggest, is meant to voice Ingram’s way of dealing with the state of affairs we all find ourselves engulfed in these days, and Ingram’s challenge here is how to convey those powerful feelings with music that does not include any lyrics that would spell it out.
Ingram and his accompanists rely on their emotional states to accomplish that goal, and how each listener takes it all in will, of course, vary accordingly. What one may interpret as anger could easily be construed as frustration or bleakness by another. An ethereal or serene passage could represent hopes and dreams or, perhaps, sheer exhaustion.