Marc Copland – Better By Far album review: Compelling piano voice

Wed, Apr 26, 2017, 15:30


Better By Far

Marc Copland

Inner Voice


Marc Copland follows last year’s excellent Zenith, his first for his own Inner Voice label, with another quartet recording straight out of the top drawer. The Philly-born pianist was in his 30s before he settled on his chosen instrument – not until after he had established himself as a saxophonist – which perhaps explains why he is such a unique and compelling piano voice, combining depth with accessibility, harmonic subtlety with affecting lyricism.

Add further layers deposited by Copland’s heavyweight group featuring trumpeter Ralph Alessi, bassist Drew Gress and drummer Joey Baron, all with minds open and ears on stalks, and you have as fine an example of mainstream acoustic jazz as you’ll hear this year.

Nothing terribly innovative, but terribly beautiful.