Joel LaRue Smith: El Mensajero
Joel LaRue Smith (piano)
Joel LaRue Smith (piano),
Fernando Heurgo (bass), Renato Malavasi (drums).
Composed by Joel LaRue Smith.
Recorded: Westwood, MA, March and August 2007
Rating: 89/100 (learn more)
Lots of stops and starts, changes in direction and tight ensemble playing mark this jazz Rumba. To be honest with you, I can't always tell one Rumba from another. (My guess is that this is a Cuban Rumba). But I know good music that is full of explorative improvising when I hear it. Pianist Joel LaRue Smith takes his solo to places I would not expect. Smith and his talented bandmates are all over the rhythms like white on rice. Rumba is about the communication of the dance. The energy, playfulness and motivation to get you moving are all strong elements here. This talented trio should be able to make anybody get off his or her … seat.
Reviewer: Walter Kolosky