Will Vinson - saxophones & keyboards
Gilad Hekselman - guitars
Antonio Sanchez - drums
Recorded at Samurai Hotel Recording, Queens, NY (April 18/19 2019)
Mixed by Mike Marciano (Sept 2019)
Tracks 1, 6 and 7 mixed by Antonio Sanchez
Mastered by Nate Wood
Produced by Will Vinson, Gilad Hekselman & Antonio Sanchez
Executive Producer - Michael Janisch
Album Cover by Jamie Breiwick at B-side Graphics
Graphic Design by Dave Bush
Photos by Elisa Caldana, Bill Douthart & Eric Ryan Anderson
released November 13, 2020
ABOUT THE ALBUM
Trio Grande is the debut statement from a brand new project that unites three of the most inventive, exciting and accomplished musicians working at the interface of New York’s contemporary musical culture, where the city’s rich tradition of jazz meets crosscurrents blowing in from across the world. British-born saxophonist Will Vinson, Israeli guitarist Gilad Hekselman and Mexico City native, longtime Jackson Heights, Queens resident Antonio Sánchez first came together at one of the city’s legendary club residencies at the Cornelia Street Café, and the chemistry and excitement was immediate. Each brings their own formidable reputation as bandleader and composer in their own right, but when they started playing together, following their impulses with all the freedom afforded by the bassless trio format, they found the music taking on its own creative directions that surprised and delighted them all.
Says Vinson: ‘We’re all grounded in jazz but all of us are also looking for other sounds and influences to bring in: that’s what we have in common, and what sets us apart is that all our sounds and influences are so different!’. The album’s magic lies in the way that so many disparate musical elements are woven together to create such a coherent whole. ‘Northbound’, driven along by its powerfully insistent low-end guitar riff, and ‘Gocta’, with its array of vast, epic soundscapes, were written by Sanchez and reflect his virtuosity and ability to deliver the power and excitement of rock music within a sophisticated musical framework. The uplifting, joyously dancing ‘Elli Yeled Tov’, with its echoes of carnival, reflects Hekselman’s love of song forms, whether pop or folk derived, and showcases the way that he can incorporate the most complex rhythmic ideas and make them sound simple and direct. His haunting ballad ‘Will You Let It?’ shows his total commitment to melody, while the lowdown sophistifunk of ‘Scoville’ is both an opportunity to flex his guitar chops and a homage to the guitar master. Vinson’s ‘Oberkampf’ is a broodingly atmospheric piece, brought into focus by contrasting but equally melodic solos from guitar and saxophone, demonstrating the ease with which the players can move in and out of the frontline and swap roles at a moment’s notice. ‘Upside’, another Vinson original, maintains an elegant, insouciant swing, while Sanchez’s ‘Firenze’ develops from an equally poised cool into a frenetic coda: both tracks allow the trio to blow freely over a closely written structure in classic jazz style, yet their vision is so unified and complete that each tune develops organically, without either sounding like a generic head-and-solos piece. Texture and dynamics are as important as melody and improvisation, all brilliantly captured by engineer Mike Marciano’s warm, crystal clear studio sound.
The music will be available on CD / DL and Limited Edition 180g Double LP with gatefold artwork. The LP contains three bonus tracks: an original by Vinson, a loving deconstruction of John Lennon’s ‘Jealous Guy’ and a reverent reading of ‘Silence’ by Charlie Haden. The selection of tracks shows the scope of the trio’s no-limits influences and underlines the spirit of openness and unity of purpose that defines this remarkable collaboration.
“It’s a project with a hard-hitting contemporary sonic all of its own.”
★★★★ Jazzwise Magazine (Editor's Choice)
"Bold, equal measures of Vinson's potent texture, Hekselman's chimes and snarls and Sánchez's sly, percussive humor backbone Trio Grande's solid eight tracks, genuinely establishing the trio as a creative and crafty entity we'll want to hear more from in the future."
★★★★ All About Jazz
"They do thoughtful, well-crafted melodic development and no holds-barred melées with equal conviction and effectiveness."
★★★★ BBC Music Magazine
“...The beauty of this disc of originals is that it’s far more than an all-star session; there’s an exceptional connection here. Each player brings his singular vision to the plate, but the collective sum is something fresh and exhilarating.”
★★★★ DownBeat Magazine
"What happens when three of the world’s most accomplished jazz musicians get together for a new trio project? Fireworks! … and an innovative, exhilarating debut album."
★★★★★ UK Vibe
"The sound of three huge individual talents coming together to create something that is even greater than the sum of its parts."
★★★★ The Jazz Mann
"Shows the scope of the trio’s no-limits influences and underlines the spirit of openness and unity of purpose that defines this collaboration."
"An encounter between three strong, distinctive musical personalities... A captivating debut."
"Fully respectful of the jazz tradition while incorporating fresh musical ideas accumulated from their global touring experiences."
Canción a quemarropa
"A confident demonstration of modern soundscapes blended with catchy hooks—all against the backdrop of the members' deep roots in jazz."
All About Jazz
"An innovative, exhilarating debut album."
"Their intuitive musical connection is obvious to hear on this stunning recording, as all three musicians combine so creatively well together."
5/5 UK Vibe
"[Trio Grande] share an effervescent spirit as improvisers, and the supreme technical command to give shape to any idea."
"[Trio Grande] are at the top of their game... the music defies categorization."
"Three of the best bandleaders, composers and players all combining here for something that is exactly as stunning as anyone could hope."
Off The Tracks
"[Trio Grande don't] disappoint, setting out an aesthetic stall that suits their rare flexibility and vision."
"Hekselman often plays at the low end of the guitar’s range, occupying a zone somewhere between guitar and bass and building up a strong rhythmic foundation before launching into biting, distorted soloing."
"Each musician is a bandleader of their own unique groups, but they come together on this recording to explore a bass-less situation."
"Most of what happens here is loud, edgy and untamed. These virtuosos are interested in kicking your ass."
New York City Jazz Record
"The magic of the album lies in the way so many different musical elements are interwoven."
"An all-star trio from the jazz motherland... the trio is defined by gripping gentleness."
"Trio Grande can rightly be called a jazz super-trio."
Written in Music ★★★★
"An abundance of everything: melodies, motifs, and gripping complex rhythms."
"Lively and exciting throughout."
★★★★ Concerto Magazine
"Here are three musicians uninterested in routine trio jazz... Always with room to groove."
“Trio Grande morphs Sanchez's mastery with the talents of guitar savant Gilad Hekselman and fiery saxophonist Will Vinson, shaping an album that sounds much larger than just a trio.”
"Above all, Sanchez is enthroned in a fascinatingly intensive percussion work – his virtuosity is always very tasteful."
★★★★★ drums & percussion
"A very special kind of fusion that makes you sit up and take notice."
Musik an sich