Grammy and Latin Grammy-winning pianist and composer John Finbury is used to an infectious Latin jazz feel that has won him accolades on the jazz scene. His latest album American Nocturnes – Final Days Of July is a brilliant departure from the Latin jazz world. Here Finbury fuses chamber music with jazz and an array of other styles which makes this one of his most compelling releases to date. There are no percussion instruments on this recording which is a bold but intriguing move for Finbury. Finbury is backed by a group of stellar musicians including Tim Ray on piano, Eugene Friesen, cello, Roni Eytan, harmonica, Claudio Ragazzi, guitar, Roberto Cassan, accordion, Vitor Concalves, accordion, Peter Eldridge, vocalize and John Finbury on piano.
There is an elegant, ambient feel to compositions like “Lay Me Down”, “Final Days Of July” and “Black Tea”. There is plenty of room for the instrumentalists to breathe and work in a thematic structure, which these pieces call for. Eugene Friesen’s cello work is magnificent as is Roni Eytan’s thoughtful harmonica lines. Each composition is a unique sonic exploration and it’s easy to hear that these tunes were composed with love and care. Finbury basks in the composer’s seat and only plays piano on “Walz For Patty”.

The mood of John Finbury – American Nocturnes – Final Days Of July is soft and relaxing. The jazz influence is subtle but it’s there none the less and it helps drive each thematic composition. Don’t miss out on this one.

You can purchase this album through Spotify, Amazon, Tidal, all digital platforms,

LA Jazz Scene Review by Doc Wendell

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