Daniel Gassin Sextet

3.5 stars

THE complexity and diversity of the ensemble pianist Daniel Gassin gathers to air his compositions on this outing suit the material.

On reeds are Phil Noy (alto) and Anton Delecca (tenor), Pat Thiele and Cam McAllister share horn roles, Michael Story is on bass, and on two tracks Felipe Cornejo on bata drums joins Craig Simon on drum kit.

The emphasis is on changing rhythms, patterns and textures rather than melodies, with energy, tension and attention to detail resulting in wonderful busyness.

Yet Interlude, McDaniel Avenue, Crossover and San Jose, in which McAllister shines, celebrate the simplicity of solo instruments.

Gassin’s piano is eclectic, providing propulsion or tripping lightly over Simon and Story’s strong foundation.

Download: Banff Song, San Jose

File beside: Johannes Luebbers Dectet


This review was published also in the Play section of Melbourne’s Sunday Herald Sun on September 3, 2011.


  1. I personally loathe the star system (why is it ok for films and CDs yet not books?) but this recording deserves more than 3.5. This is a really great recording, I’m surprised it didn’t make your top ten.

  2. I agree that the star system is of limited use, but newspapers and some other media seem to require its use by reviewers. As to how many stars a particular album is given, I’d never argue with anyone who says one deserves more. I would only say that I follow a rough principle that very few albums deserve 4.5 or 5 stars out of five unless they have stood the test of time, which is usually not the case if the reviewer has had it for a week or even a month or two. So four and 3.5 stars is pretty high on this basis.
    Further to that, Vicki, it is all terribly subjective and I can only go by a sense of whether an album really grabs me enough to rate four stars, or is liked enough to rate three or 3.5. This year I was moved to give Sandy Evans’ suite 4.5. The previous year I regretted not having given Mike Nock’s double album An Accumulation of Subtleties more than four, because I still love it. I did not ever review Paul Grabowsky’s Tales of Time and Space, but I would give it five stars now.

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