Keyboardist and composer Craig Taborn may have released his first unaccompanied solo recording just last year but the Minnesota-native is no newcomer to the music business. During his 20-year career, Taborn has served as sideman to respected jazz artists like Steve Coleman and Roscoe Mitchell, among others. He’s also explored experimental jazz and electronic music.
With Taborn’s newest release, Avenging Angel, his first solo album with ECM recordings and fourth in all, Taborn delves into solo piano performance in all its facets. As he explains in the album's promotional material: “Throughout this recording I’m honing in on specific details. The music is really improvised: I just start. But having started, I try to relate everything that happens, like the motivic or rhythmic and textural detail, to the initial ideas as closely as I can. […] I’m interested in the history of piano music, certainly, but I’m not hearing the instrument quite in those terms. I’m experiencing it also as a pure sound source, very aware of the tones and the overtones and how the instrument is ringing. This music is not about ‘transcending the piano’ as much as it is about working with what is possible within it.”
Its title song “Avenging Angel” is available for download above and watch Taborn perform the piece below, in a recording of a solo concert held at Vienna’s Konzerthaus last December.
The Craig Taborn Trio -- featuring bassist Thomas Morgan and drummer Gerald Cleaver -- begins a weekend residency at the Village Vanguard on Friday night.