Trippin', the third album from the Paris-based Eric Legnini Trio, is a stylish collection of tunes named in honor of The Meters' third album, Struttin' (Josie, 1970). When Legnini takes to the Fender Rhodes, on "Trippin'" or "Doo Goo" for example, the influence of The Meters' organ-driven sound is clear—both tunes are uplifting, dance-oriented numbers with "Doo Goo" featuring some irresistible and funky rhythms. But this album is much more than a tribute album to New Orleans rhythm and blues—the trio is certainly capable of funky, danceable tunes but it can also deliver on ballads, hard bop, and straight-ahead material.
Legnini combines his own compositions with an intriguing selection of standards. A straightforward version of Jimmy Van Heusen's "Darn That Dream" showcases Legnini's piano, while Dizzy Gillespie's "Con Alma" swings beautifully, thanks especially to the drumming of Franck Agulhon. Stevie Wonder's "The Secret Life of Plants" is stripped bare and turned into a delicate and gentle solo piano performance.