Chip Stephens Trio—Relevancy

Most jazz trios offer pleasurable listening. Is it the simplicity (usually piano, bass and drums) of three musicians complementing each other in often a relaxed manner? By that I mean once the numbers of musos in a band rises, say above six, there is a lot more work done by everybody feverishly reading the score, awaiting key changes and anticipating their solos.
If you listen to the Chip Stephens Trio on Relevancy you will see what I am getting at. Visit his record company’s website and listen to the music: Use the site for more information and to order the album.
Stephens (piano) leads the Trio with Dennis Carroll (bass) and a drum-mer, Joel Spencer, who reminds me so much of a young Shelley Manne in that he is not just there as part of the rhythm section but he uses his kit as a musical instrument. Impressive!
Stephens has composed three of the tracks, some of other tunes fea-tured are: Like Someone in Love (Van Heusen/Burke), This Funny World (Rodgers/Hart), Be My Love (Cahn/Brodsky) and Skiddo (Bill Evans).