The Australian

Rajiv Jayaweera - "Pistils"

This is such a lovely album that it's difficult to know where to start. Drummer - percussionist Rajiv Jayaweera now lives in New York, where this album Pistils was recorded. Born in London of Sri Lankan parents, he grew up in Melbourne and graduated from the Victorian College of the Arts in 2000.

His nine compositions on Pistils explore an array of contemporary time-feels and feature two Americans, Chris Cheek (saxophones) and Aaron Parks (piano), plus two Australians in Hugh Stuckey (guitar) and Sam Anning (double bass). Spaniard Lara Bello sings on the title track. The basic character of the music is determined by Jayaweera, a drummer of unusual subtlety and good taste, always alive to punctuating the music but never intrusive. Anning's bass lines, beautifully recorded, can be felt as well as heard. It's such a pleasure to know there are modern jazz musicians in the world playing like this.

Eric Myers