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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mike Kennedy: Insulation

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This unpretentious but edifying album consists of a series of guitar originals which flow into one another to form a unified whole. The music is relaxing, with a light swing that calls to mind guitarists like Wes Montgomery and Jim Hall, and might be called, to coin a phrase, “soft bop." Mike Kennedy, guitarist and leader, Mike Frank, piano, Paul Gehman, bass, and Dan Monaghan, drums are all Philadelphia-based musicians with extensive track records (no pun intended), and the consistency among the tracks is reminiscent of a little known but outstanding recording by the late great Philly bassist Al Stauffer ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Tampere Jazz Happening 2014

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Tampere Jazz Happening Tampere, Finland October 30--November 2, 2014 On the way from the airport to the city of Tampere you pass by Nokia, situated fifteen kilometres west of Tampere, the Scandinavian city famous for its gumboots and cables, and famous for its mobile phones. For a while 'Nokia' was synonymous with mobile phone. When you arrive in Tampere you can immediately recognize the industrial character and history of the town. The Finnish territories were industrial late-bloomers but when the industrial revolution started, Tampere was at its centre. The city rapidly grew into ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Pat Metheny Unity Group at Centrepointe Theatre

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Pat Metheny Unity Group Centrepointe Theatre Ottawa, Canada November 12, 2014 “Every time we're planning a tour," he said to the near-sellout crowd at Ottawa, Canada's Centrepointe Theatre, “I always ask 'are we going to play Ottawa?' You think I'm joking..." It's not often that the opportunity arises to catch a group near the beginning and end of a year-long world tour but, after seeing guitarist Pat Metheny's Unity Group at Stavanger, Norway's Mai Jazz Festival in early May, 2014, a second opportunity arose to catch the group's tour in support of Kin ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jonathan Kreisberg: Wave Upon Wave

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Wave upon wave of praise has followed the release of each one of guitarist Jonathan Kreisberg's leader dates--small group affairs that are typically built with equal parts energy and taste; Wave Upon Wave, balancing fire with heart, stealth movement with direct engagement, and power with grace, is likely to garner some more. The fleet-fingered Kreisberg focuses on originals here, shifting between the mellow ("Being Human") and the charged ("Until You Know"). And through it all, regardless of style and syntax, his molten-and-focused tone shines through. There's a liquid glow behind his every gesture, whether he's flowing atop ...

LIVE REVIEWS

November Music 2014

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November Music s' Hertogenbosch November 8-9, 2014 November Music is a festival of contemporary music, new music in the broadest sense, held in the medieval town of s'-Hertogenbosch in the southeast of The Netherlands and home of painter Jheronimus Bosch (1450-1516). Besides the core of contemporary composers' music there are neighboring branches such as experimental pop, sound art/sound installations, as well as jazz and free improvised music presented during five days in the first week of November. Concerts are spread throughout the city, with the transformed old rusk and cookie factory of Verkade at the center. ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Samo Salamon: Ives

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In addition to being a prolific recording artist, each one of guitarist Samo Salamon's projects is uniquely inventive. Quantity with Salamon is never at the expense of quality. Ives, his fourth release as a leader for the year 2014 is a collaboration with two other guitarists, each with his own distinct style.Their individualities contrast and complement one another in delightful and elegant patterns in these fourteen, intensely poetic tracks most of them Salamon compositions. On the impressionistic “Seagulls In Maine," for instance Danish guitaristMikkel Ploug's thick, heady strums echo against Frenchman Manu Codjia's resonant, sparse strings while Salamon ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Holograma: Origen

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The idea for anchoring an ancient theme to music and producing a conceptual record can be challenging as well as rewarding. The experimental jazz trio Holograma, blended Sumerian mythology with a revision of primal rhythms throughout Origen to create a courageous statement of authentic innovation. Though there are superb performances by guest artists, the trio of guitarist Raul Romero, bassist Bermudo, and drummer Efrain Martinez are in charge here and carry the brunt of the load. Opening with shamanic renderings from the Epic of Gilgamesh in “The Flood," complete with rain and thunder, there is a rapid advancement ...



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