Eric Truffaz ‘El tiempo de la revolucion’ (Blue Note) 3/5

Swiss trumpeter Eric Truffaz has for some fifteen years or more experimented with fusing hip-hop beats and electro jazz with a trumpet sound that begins somewhere from Miles’ ‘Bitches Brew’ period onwards. This forward thinking approach has sometimes taken in seemingly ill-fitting collaborations with rappers, though thankfully this has been discarded for the present album, and on this latest releases vocalist Anna Aaron is on hand to add a new folk-inspired dimmension to some numbers, most notably on the pop-tinged ‘Blue movie’. The groove-laden bassline to ‘Istanbul tango’ is where the band are heard to best effect individually and it is a distinctly mellow number with the organ accompaniment to the fore. Another, more decpetive piece is ‘African mist’ which again uses an incessant bassline while Truffaz’s trumpet floats along in Davisesque fashion. In fact the Miles parallel surfaces intriguingly on a nu-soul number ‘La luna mentirosa’ with a fine muted harmon solo from the leader. Wah wah trumpet greets the listener on the altogether funkier territory of ‘Mr K’ and this is the ideal terrain in which Truffaz can operate and it is a pity that there are not more examples of this. Truffaz is capable of great subtlety and he creates an atmospheric feel when dueting with keyboard on ‘Un souffle qui passe’. Likewise the trumpeter delivers another delicate solo on the piano-led ‘Revolution of time’ which has something of a film soundtrack ambiance to it. If there is one criticism that one could make of his music, it is that Truffaz sometimes gives the impression of not shifting out of second gear and he is certainly talented enough to move up another couple of notches at least. He should definitely be one to watch in a live context and will be performing in late March at Ronnie Scott’s. Tim Stenhouse

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