Here’s a trumpet player that might just get your attention. European born and educated Tomasz Dabrowski has a tone and style that hints at the lyrical fragility of a Kenny Dorham or Blue Mitchell, yet he uses it in a format that is a bit on the freer side. The mix of melody with a lack of boundaries combines melodicism with experimentation in a quite appealing way on these two releases of his that are in divergent formats.
The trio session from Denmark with Nils Bo Davidsen/b and Anders Mogensen mixes telepathic interplay with subtle and understated impressionism. There is a spaciousness in material such as “Buzz Wow” and “I’ll Repeat Only Once” that reveals a deep conversational tone. Dabrowski’s half tones on “Cold Hands” weaves in and out of Davidsen’s thoughtful bass, while a bluesy groove on “European 46” and the walking “After Jam” demonstrate an ability to lean into a beat, but without being intrusive. Delicate yet poignant, as sounds are used like colors.
Dabrowski then goes on a US duet session with drummer Tyshawn Sorey through ten songs that could have easily gone out of control, but rely more on restraint and refinement than demonstrating muscularity. Dabrowski’s soft tone is free but cogent on themes such as “Song 4” and the crystalline “Song 5”, while Sorey knows when to use the brushes (“”Song 9 (invited to Linger”) or let his drums rumble in the underground (“Song 1 (Grayish)”). The partners are able to play with dynamics as they sometimes start gently and build up to a climax as on “Song 5” or go for a softer landing as they parachute successfully on “Song3”. Don’t let the numbering of the song titles fool you: a lot of thought goes into these themes. Well crafted.