Acoustic trio Yetii produce a beautifully evocative live album of original compositions and stunning improvisation.
Release: 10th November 2022
Label: Self – released
Format: CD / Digital
Live at The Greenbank is an album that flows out of a three year long monthly residency at the Greenbank venue in Bristol, by a trio of excellent musicians called Yetii. The trio comprise of Alex Veitch on piano, Ashley John Long on bass, and Alex Goodyear on drums. The album was recorded live this year on the 7 July and has become, after several highly enjoyable listens, one of this reviewer’s favourite albums of 2022.
Alex Veitch’s compositions and arrangements are beautifully put together and paced, and highly evocative in the palette of emotions and thoughts they can generate in the listener. The trio have an intuitive and free flowing approach to their playing, which creates an incredible platform for their constantly inventive and nuanced improvisations. This is music that becomes like a friend as you journey with the trio through contrasting moods, textures, and tonal colours.
This trio have been playing together for five years and the shared empathy and trust in their playing is palpable, as each musician ebbs and flows within their sparkling and engaging musical creations. The album opens with the exquisite melody of Spring played by Alex Veitch’s piano, with the notes seeming to hang in the air. Ashley John Long’s bass floats gracefully into the mix with some elegant and beautifully sustained phrases. Alex Goodyear’s engaging brushed rhythms introduce a delightful shift of pace. It is a composition that is completely joyous to immerse yourself in.
Enough has a gentle swing, with a rhythmic pulse that both shuffles and undulates, courtesy of some wonderfully deft and sympathetic playing from the bass and drums. The piano work has both an upbeat melodic sweep as well as at times a more elegiac atmosphere. This sets the scene for the composition Asking. It is a piece of music which has a wonderful hesitancy as an empathic dialogue begins between the three players, with phrases developed and sensitively layered within the emerging landscape of sound. Then almost imperceptibly, out of the musical mist, a reverberating romantic theme takes hold. The return to a more understated playing creates overall a mesmerising and thrilling listening experience over the course of this wonderful performance.
Summer opens with some gorgeous solo bass playing, full of magical melodic inflections. The piano leads have a pastoral and contemplative quality that evoke a sense of wonderment and discovery and being in the moment with the world around us. In fact, the whole of this record has an immediacy, and ability to generate an immersive atmosphere, which leads the listener to feel they are in the venue with the audience, experiencing the music live. Grounded completes the set of original compositions and brings together both the abstract and finely sculpted soundscapes the trio can create within a musical work.
To conclude the album, there is an instrumental version of the Carole King and Gerry Goffin song, Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow. There are musically interpretive skills of the highest order on display here as the trio playfully bring out the emotional and melodic range of this great song.
The cover artwork on the CD version by Ian Anderson is very striking and perfectly complements the journeying musical experience to be enjoyed with this album. This is an album that you are recommended to explore and make friends with. You will be rewarded with music you will want to listen to time and time again.
You can view the video of Yetii playing Asking, here: