You and The Night And The Music marks pianist Alan Broadbent’s A440 debut and his first trio outing (under his own name) since Personal Standards (Concord, 1997). Six years is a long time by any standard, but You and The Night And The Music proves itself worth the wait. Mr. Broadbent is a class act and this recording readily separates itself from lesser successful outings because of this class.
Alan Broadbent is a New Zealander thoroughly familiar with the art of Bill Evans, Wynton Kelly and Tommy Flanagan. He is a superb interpreter of ballads, which he demonstrates on a broad variety of the genera. Here, bassist Brian Bromberg (who also produces the recording) and drummer Joe LaBarbera (formerly of Bill Evans' trio) support Broadbent, who offers his teammates equal solo billing, with Bromberg taking full advantage of the pianist’s generosity. Mr. Broadbent’s playing is orchestral, with a gentle swing. He opens the disc with the title tune, taken at angular upbeat. He and Bromberg solo impressively. Likewise with "With the Wind and the Rain In Her Hair." The pianist takes these tunes slightly faster than true ballad speed and in doing so shows off their swinging beauty.
Lee Morgan’s "Ceora" is given an elastic treatment replete with bend-flowing basslines by Bromberg. The ubiquitous "What’s New" follows as one of the lengthier pieces on the disc (clocking in at eight minutes). It is a beautiful exercise in orchestral piano playing — Broadbent’s playing is full-bodied and exciting. The sonics of the piece illustrate the superb engineering of the recording as a whole. Jerome Kern’s "Dearly Beloved" closes this excellent disc on a solid note.