Jazz preview: Keith Jarrett Trio, London

Royal Festival Hall, SE1, Sat

When Keith Jarrett played the Festival Hall last winter, people were shouting "I love you, Keith" and, "You're a genius" - generous submissions that nonetheless didn't soften the improviser's resolve to harangue his audience for coughing. Jarrett might be less strict about the low-level dynamics with Jack DeJohnette's drums and Gary Peacock's bass on hand, but the fixation on unbroken concentration won't waver; it isn't egotism, but the determination to sustain the ideal conditions to let his whim, experience and encyclopaedic music knowledge carry him away. This is the first UK concert in six years for Jarrett's great Standards Trio, launched in 1983 to re-examine the standards repertoire through the prism of the pianist's inventiveness. They've developed a more playful lightness and softness of touch, even exploring such orderly early styles as stride piano by means of Jarrett's uninhibitedness about improvising as if bar-lines and chorus-breaks were simply there to be brushed aside. It's one of the all-time great jazz groups.


John Fordham

The GuardianTramp

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