Rabo de Nube, Charles Lloyd’s previous release with pianist Jason Moran, double-bassist Reuben Rogers and drummer Eric Harland, was so well received—awards galore, rave reviews—that it’s not surprising to find the same lineup returning for an encore. Mirror is more subdued than its predecessor—nearly all of the tracks are ballads, and while the musicianship is of course exemplary, it’s a relatively tamer affair. Not that it’s at all a disappointment: The chemistry between these four musicians rivals that of any group the now-72-year-old Lloyd has led. Lloyd’s solos are bold and polished, and he gives his musicians a wide berth. Moran, in particular, has matured into one of the most artful young jazz pianists on the scene, always imaginative and quick-witted, superb as both sympathetic support player and as creative soloist. Throughout Mirror, the quartet locks in tight and brings out the material’s full potential. –Jeff Tamarkin

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