Tim Lapthorn is a highly gifted and exceptionally expressive young jazz pianist making his mark on the British scene. His bluesy, flowing, lyrical sound sets him apart from many of his contemporaries. His music is accessible and open and his style very much his own. His extensive classical piano practice in a family home that required him to be quiet has had a major impact on his touch which can be delicate and feminine when others crash and bang. His passion for harmony, especially Debussy and Ravel, is evident in his playing. His solos are marked above all by lyricism, conciseness, and total economy of statement. Lapthorn always chooses brevity, clarity and simplicity over pianistic pyrotechnics. This aesthetic approach has helped make him one of the top jazz accompanists as well as a major soloing figure. Critics seeking Jarrett-esque indulgence may despair at this reserve but telling a profound story in relatively few exquisitely well chosen words requires incredible talent. Often the writer has witnessed a crowded and noisy restaurant instantly descend into total jaw-dropping silence, all heads turned to stare at the source of pianistic beauty to which they are compelled to listen or miss a profoundly honest and special moment.
Lapthorn is one of the few jazz pianists working today whose every (and any) striking of the key is a supple gem of tone. Notes ring with clarity; the piano keys are not "pressed" but rather "struck" with an "effortless" dead force technique that sets him apart from almost all his contemporaries.