Yelena Eckemoff is a highly-gifted pianist/composer who leys violinist Mark Feldman shine on her Leaving Everything Behind (L & H Production.) She also has legendary drummer Billy Hart and bassist Ben Street moving things along in a jazz route because Yelena is a classical pianist from the Moscow State Conservatory who left her studies, her country, her life and her children behind to come to America. The result is an absolutely gorgeous classical/jazz synthesis that drips with pathos (especially “Tears of Tenderness.”) Evocative, romantic, with a sound that leans heavily on violin and piano/violin interplay, Leaving Everything Behind grows on you with repeated listenings.

Mike Greenblatt for Rant ‘n’ Roll