In any given year, there are a number of new piano-trio albums that exhibit masterful technique, good taste, and musicians keenly attuned to one another. But every once in a while, something comes along that's all that and more: Craig Taborn Trio’s Chants is extraordinary. Taborn is well-known for his work with a number of artists, including Roscoe Mitchell, Chris Potter, and Michael Formanek. But he hasn’t released a ton of his own work, which makes Chants all the more striking. Taborn, bassist Thomas Morgan, and drummer Gerald Cleaver burn it up here. “Beat the Ground” absolutely smokes: the rhythm section creates an intense and unusual groove as Taborn goes from playing a figure over and over again to letting it rip. “Silver Ghosts” features subtle drumming by Cleaver as Taborn etches out mysterious lines and Morgan wrings various colors from his instrument. On “Silver Days or Love,” Taborn weaves a beautiful atonal fabric and Morgan plays a solo where every note speaks. “Speak the Name” opens with a drum statement by Cleaver before Taborn and Morgan join in and bring the album to a supercharged close.

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