Newmarket FOLLOWING the release of this new, self-titled album, Melbourne pianist Adam Katz was recently nominated among five finalists in the Melbourne Prize for Music Development Award, with a prize of $13,000. This collection uses six Melbourne musicians plus US drummer Keith Carlock, who recorded his parts in New York playing with guide tracks, which the rest of the group then overrecorded in a seamless Melbourne production. The five tracks are Katz’s compositions and he plays piano on each of them. Along with bassist Brendan Tsui, Julien Wilson — fast becoming the tenor saxophonist of choice in Melbourne — appears on Mistral, adding emotive force to a piece of melodic interest with elements of softrock rhythms where, after the building of intensity by piano and sax, Carlock executes a stylish, rapid drum solo. Ben Anderson takes over the sax role with soprano on Working Title and Nic Lam adds a rock-oriented guitar minus howls and shrieks as the piano moves from strong chordal backing to a quieter, flowing solo gradually increasing in strength for the soprano’s re-entry. A quietened piano and bass are the sole instruments in
Interlude, a pleasant wandering excursion in a relaxed mode. Christian Meyer is the guitarist on
Blue Pants, another soft-rock exercise with mobile piano, flaring guitar and drums that tick along with the pulse. Lullabye consists of a semi-classical solo piano moving in a pleasing harmonic structure at a slow, steady pace with satisfying resolutions and a stately, unhurried atmosphere. This is an album of top-class playing and shows that Katz is a fine pianist capable of engaging, often dulcet compositions.