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by David Beckett in La Scena Musicale #16:6 (Québec), March 1, 2011 on Espoir et autres pouvoirs [4387]

Montréaler Marianne Trudel may not be as well known as the preceeding musicians, but her brand new Effendi release (out this month) should enable her to gain more recognition, and inclusion on a few of best-of-the-year lists from jazz writers and radio hosts. If widely heard, this fourth album of hers might even give her that important career break. This talented pianist-composer has assembled a fine band here, comprised of drummer Philippe Melanson and bassist Normand Guilbeault along with a singular brass trio of Jocelyn Veilleux on French Horn, Jean-Olivier Bégin on trombone and Lina Allemano on trumpet. Topping off the cast is singer Anne Schaefer, whose wordless vocalese blend in seamlessly with the ensemble, often limning the melody in the manner of a big-band lead trumpet. The leader’s thoughtful writing and varied arranging on this recording are so surefooted that the ten tracks seem to slip by in minutes. Souffle, for example, begins with a lengthy choral-like introduction for the brass section before the rest of the ensemble enters, a rarity in jazz. Another piece, M, is a piano trio recorded live at Montréal’s fine concert venue, le Lion d’Or, a number that allows the rhythm section to stretch out. After I listen to Espoirs et autres pouvoirs again, I’ll certainly be seeking out her previous recordings. Bravo! 5 stars out of 6

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