[13 January 2014]
PopMatters Associate Music Editor
French jazz pianist Laurent Coq made Dialogue with guitarist Ralph Lavital and vocalist Nicolas Pelage in only two days. That’s not bad considering that all of the songs are originals—eight by Coq, three by Lavital—and Coq decided to add a vocalist to the mix at the last minute. Pelage was encouraged to write his lyrics in Creole, a language with which he was the most familiar. Taking all of these variables into account, it’s incredible how easily Dialogue falls together. Lavital was a student in one of Coq’s composition classes and Pelage knew the two from various bands that students would form in their downtime. The resultant sound is a creamy cross between Bill Evans/Jim Hall and Sérgio Mendes, a playful yet intricate brand of jazz that doesn’t sag, even in its slower passages. Consider the album a portable piece of summer.