Florian Ross WDR Big Band
Toy Piano Records
5 stars
Reviewed by Leita Hutchings

Front and Center is the eighteenth album for pianist, Florian Ross. He composes, performs, teaches in several institutions, including the Berlin Jazz Institute, and has started his own music label. It is thoughtful jazz; something you can listen to at any time. Tracks range from what is gentle and good for the soul, to tracks with the brass band sound, and some that are downright funky. And all in one CD. Echo Chamber is very chilled, and I feel that Madeleine must be very loved. Florian describes his music on his website as “coming from a deep synthesis of heart and mind, of feeling and intellect”, and I couldn’t agree more. The website by the way, is in both English and German to facilitate getting to know the composer and his music better, attesting to his international following. Florian performed recently at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music Jazz Festival. He has a lovely presence and, not surprisingly, this is reflected in his album.