Alan Rosenthal – “Elbow Grease” – Street of Stars Records
New York native, University of Chicago educated Alan Rosenthal got his musical start in classical. Despite first playing jazz in high school, his degree from the University of Chicago is in classical composition. Upon returning to New York, he has become a full-fledged jazz performer and has played at many of the most popular New York area jazz clubs and venues in his career. His latest release, “Elbow Grease,” is an amalgam of differing styles and tempos. Rosenthal’s training is on the piano so quite naturally that is the featured instrument. The nine tracks, eight originals and one cover, range from very soft and melodic to a more fanciful, upbeat sound. Always, however, are the tracks well-crafted and the piano weaves very freely with a variety of horns, strings and percussion. This is traditional jazz, make no mistake. But it seems like Rosenthal is seeking to give a wide brushstroke of the jazz canvas in this work. Something I would say he accomplishes quite well.
Overall: 8; Sonics: 8