Peter Madsen's CIA Trio: 88 Butterfly


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Peter Madsen's CIA Trio: 88 Butterfly
Many jazz artists find butterflies inspiring. Pianist Herbie Hancock recorded "Butterfly" for his Thrust album for Columbia Records in 1974. In 1993 guitarist Russell Malone released his Black Butterfly (Columbia Records), the title tune a rendition of a Duke Ellington/Irving Berlin composition; and the Chick Corea + Steve Gadd Band offered up the album Chinese Butterfly (Concord Music Group) in 2018. There are many more examples.

Those three cited albums didn't immerse themselves in the butterfly; it was one butterfly tune, and a batch of unrelated groovers. Nothing wrong with that—we are talking about three excellent albums. But pianist Peter Madsen and his CIA Trio—named for Madsen's multiple ensemble, Austria-based Collective of Improvising Artists—-go all in on the butterfly theme with 88 Butterfly. Twelve tunes are presented here, each celebrating a different type of butterfly: The Blue Morpho, the Emerald Swallowtail, the Giant Owl, the Xerces Blue.

The sound of the trio is, fittingly, largely anti-gravitational and unfailingly lovely. Masden is a master of the light touch, and his trio mates—bassist Herwig Hammerl and drummer Martin Grabher—fit into a supportive role with a stylish elan.

There is no reason to name highlights. The set is straight through beauty—lilting sounds that find the occasional light groove through twelve superior compositions laid down with a gleaming polish. And kudos to the design, cover art and liner notes, and the included album booklet with the gorgeous photos of the butterflies that Madsen and company interpret so well.

Track Listing

Eighty-Eight Butterfly; Blue Morpho Butterfly; Sylphina Butterfly; Angola White Swordtail Butterfly; Peacock Pansy Butterfly; Emeral Swallowtail Butterfly; Apollo Butterfly; Giant Owl Butterfly; Glasswinged Butterfly; Monarch Butterfly; Zebra Longwinged Butterfly; Xerces Blue Butterfly.


Peter Madsen: piano; Herwig Hammerl: bass, acoustic; Martin Grabher: clarinet.

Album information

Title: 88 Butterfly | Year Released: 2022 | Record Label: Playscape Recordings

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