Winner of the BBC Scottish Young Jazz Musician of the Year at only 17, and Berklee College of Music’s prestigious Billboard Award, pianist/composer Alan Benzie is one of the UK’s most exciting talents. He is joined by friends and long time collaborators Andrew Robb on bass (BBC Scottish Young Jazz Musician of the Year 2009; Bass Europe Competition Winner 2018) and Marton Juhasz on drums (Foundation for Hungarian Percussion Culture Award 2010; “Drummer of the Year” 2014 and 2015, JazzMa reader’s poll).
Their debut album “Traveller’s Tales” and more recent release “Little Mysteries” both garnered glowing reviews, with “Little Mysteries” also winning Best Album in the 2018 Scottish Jazz Awards. They have been delighting audiences throughout the UK and Europe over the last few years, including at London International Jazz Festival and United Europe Jazz Festival, as well as being the featured artists on BBC Radio 3’s “Jazz Line-Up”, Austrian National Radio and BBC Scotland’s “The Jazz House” and “Jazz Nights”. The music is rooted in European and American jazz, but is influenced by impressionist piano music and film music, and Benzie’s love of Japanese animation gives a visual, storytelling quality. From sensitive, magical textures to virtuosic explosions of energy, the trio are both sophisticated and accessible, with the warmth, empathy and interplay that can only be achieved through great friendship and years of making music together.
“Tasteful and well-judged, this trio makes a terrific team... (Benzie) has created a set of memorable tunes and his playing, plus that of his colleagues, is exemplary throughout. There is a radiance and beauty about this music.” The Jazz Mann
“Andrew Robb and Marton Juhasz on bass and drums are all about close ensemble interaction, and sometimes it’s as if their sounds were coming out from the inside of Benzie’s piano... Bennie’s playing has a hushed yet yearning quality to it; an exquisite touch and elegant virtuosity make for a thoroughly engaging listen.” Jazzwise
"Benzie doesn't sound like a young artist struggling for a voice... There's an affecting sense of place in the quiet ostinatos and modulations of Hazy Dawns...but with drummer Marton Juhasz and bassist Andrew Robb, the trio fire up plenty of dynamism too..." The Guardian
"Benzie's imagistic style recalls John Taylor's a little, perhaps Bobo Stenson... I particularly liked the pensive, brooding quality of "A Wandering Mist" that is then developed extensively and shows layers of intricacy in trio interplay... the Benzie compositions are strong and his mastery of the piano impressive..." Marlbank
"This album is the work of an already strong voice and road-hardened group that presents Benzie's music with empathy and understanding... No background knowledge is required to enjoy Benzie's clear articulation and thoroughly engaging musicality." The Herald
"A fine piece of work... Luminously toned, atmospheric and often impressionistic music that suggests it has been the result of careful consideration... Highly engaging." The Scotsman
"Not your usual piano trio album - far from it... He comes across as in inventive pianist and creative composer devoid of cliches… This is the perfectly integrated trio" Bebop Spoken Here
"This has to be one of the best debut albums for some time..." Sandy Brown Jazz