“Pedro Neves, one of the most prestigious pianists in Oporto (Portugal), is releasing Ausente, the debut album as leader of his trio. It's music sums the work Pedro Neves developed side by side with Miguel Ângelo (db) and Leandro Leonet (d) along the past few years and states the maturity these three wonderful musicians have been seeking together. Pedro Neves has a wide musical background, which assigns this album with a great amount of singular choices within his jazz vocabulary. The time was just right for Pedro Neves Trio to share such experience with the audience and so Ausente is finally out.”
All about Jazz
"How much lyricism can a jazz record hold?
What distance should we keep to assess the intimacy that music holds?
How much time do we need to turn a relationship into complicity?How many times must we claim that Jazz is also European?
How do we honor the presence of the piano within the jazz style?
What do we need to state that "less is more"?
What if all chamber music was like this?
With no intention of being presumptuous, I believe that the answer to these questions is provided by the Pedro Neves "Ausente" trio.
I challenge you to prove otherwise."
“The three musicians build a relaxing environment that encourages a close listen... We could assimilate the sound of this work to some pianists in northern Europe. I would even find some similarity to the sound of Brad Mehldau. It is a melodic, beautiful, relaxing and absolutely recommendable disc.”
“The music listened in the album "Ausente", where all tracks, except two, are authored by Pedro Neves, takes us into an European jazz that, in some cases,evokes soundscapes not so different from the ones proposed by Nordic pianists often associated to the well known "ECM sound" and with clear aptitude to melodically nourished moderate and slow tempo. Neves presents us with the mature writing revealing a knowledge of the genre and format embodied in a illuminated pianism. The theme that gives the title to the album, which is the first and the longest track of the CD, leaves us with the feeling that it was composed as if was to be a soundtrack of an imaginary film.. The mild atmosphere of "Cinco Almofadas" holds onto an assertive bass line, showing that Miguel Ângelo is not only a mere accompanist and takes on a central role on the musical constructions of the trio. "Casa do Santa" is a canonical balad with all its belongings, including the delicate drum brushes of the assertive Leonet. "Sete palmos" remains in one's memory due to its interesting melodic web. The interaction between the three musicians reaches its zenith through the dynamism of the theme "A Bonança Pode Esperar" and in "Lady Bug". Aifos (anagram for Sofia) is another fine moment . This piece is one of the two themes authored by Miguel Ângelo, which is decisively characterized by the artist musicality. Another track "Tramal" is given a different reading from the version included in "Branco", the succeeded debut album of the bass-player. The absence cycle comes to an end with an optimistic view of the stunning theme "Presente".
The record label of Associação Porta Jazz, which has been created in 2012, has been disclosing the diversity and the good Jazz standard made in Oporto, but this seventh release really rings the bell: Ausente the debut album of the pianist Pedro Neves trio (born in 1978), with Miguel Ângelo (bass) and Leandro Leonet (drums), stands at the same level of what the "classic" piano trio has generated in Portugal - Mário Laginha, Bernardo Sassetti, Kolme, Filipe Raposo - or abroad - Bobo Stenson, António Farao, John Taylor, Jef Nev. These names are not stated randomly, as Pedro Neves shares with these a tasteful sense of melody and a marvelous balance between rhythmic and lyric elan. The Neves nine themes are consistently inspirational and the intimacy of the trio is flawless (the piano is just a primus inter pares). The handling of the strain / relaxation and effusion / restraint extremes is astute. "Sete Palmos" stands out by its solemn and dramatic tone recalling the piano ballads of the Germanic romanticism; "Lady Bug" by graciously dancing throughout a relaxing funk in between arrhythmias; "Presente" by the melody that makes any composer eaten up with envy.With a debut with this maturity and refinement, Pedro Neves makes his presence known at the Jazz arena.
Time Out Lisboa/Porto