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INTERVIEWS

Steven Wilson: Intuitive Indulgences and Pop Proclivities

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The trajectory of Steven Wilson's career, since stepping away from his longtime band Porcupine Tree to go solo, has been nothing short of remarkable. Since interviewing him in 2012 for the release of Get All You Deserve (Kscope, 2012)--an audio and video document of his world tour in support of Grace for Drowning (Kscope, 2011), his second solo album following 2009's Insurgentes (Kscope)-- Wilson has released a third studio recording, 2013's The Raven That Refused to Sing (And Other Stories) ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

John Stowell/Michael Zilber Quartet: Live Beauty

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Part of the appeal of the teaming of guitarist John Stowell with various “post Coltrane" saxophonists is the cool/hot dynamic. Stowell is the guy with a Zen restraint, the cool guy, his chords sometimes sounding as if they are ringing from frozen stalactite filaments in ice caves. Saxophonists? Some blow cool-- those of the Lester Young/Stan Getz/Paul Desmond school. And then there's sax guys like Dave Liebman, who teamed with Stowell on the marvelous duet set, Blue Rose (Origin Records, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Richie Goods and Nuclear Fusion: Three Rivers

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Growing up in the 1970s, I was a rabid fan of the aggressive and adventurous sounds of jazz-rock, later re-branded as “jazz fusion." I slowly lost interest as the style became mired in a sticky sea of overproduced pop moves and smooth sentiment, but held out hope for some sort of renaissance. The jam-band fad of the early 90s, the yeoman work of highly individualistic, often avant-leaning artists such as Ronald Shannon Jackson, Dr. Nerve, Terje Rypdal, and a host ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Joel Silva: Geyser

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Portuguese drummer Joel Silva has organized a very fine band to bring his compositions to life. The resulting album, Geyser, is a deeply felt paean to nature and man's place within it. From the opening track, the music (with one exception) creates mental images of wide-open spaces and the emotions of awe and humility. Within this emotional space, the core band of fellow Portuguese countryman, pianist Joao Paulo Esteves da Silva and bassist Antonio Quintino, assisted by two ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Sigurdur Flosason/Kjeld Lauritsen: Daybreak

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They used to call this kind of thing “mood music." The idea was to put the listener in a particular mood, usually one of calm and relaxation. When it came to jazz, the US label Prestige climbed on the bandwagon with a whole series titled--wait for it-- “Moodsville." Moodsville aimed at providing jazz that was “beautiful, poetic and thoughtful." Talented Icelandic alto saxophonist Sigurdur Flosason and Danish Hammond organ player Kjeld Lauritsen have similar ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Steven Wilson: Hand. Cannot. Erase.

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Sometimes you never can tell. When British singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Steven Wilson released the old school progressive rock record The Raven That Refused to Sing (And Other Stories) (Kscope, 2013), who knew that it would not only turn out to be his best-selling album since walking away from Porcupine Tree to begin an increasingly successful solo career with Insurgentes (Kscope, 2009), but become the most successful album in his entire career? That progressive rock has been making a resurgence ...

INTERVIEWS

David Lyttle: Facing All The Music

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In times when independent musicians have to function as one-person business enterprises most musicians show more than one face. David Lyttle, drummer par excellence from Waringstown, Northern Ireland, wears more faces than most. Musician, songwriter, record label owner, producer, interviewer and talent scout--Lyttle has built a solid reputation in multiple fields in a relatively short span of time. Perhaps best known as a jazz drummer in the early years of his professional career, Lyttle has increasingly pushed himself ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Curtis Nowosad: Dialectics

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While it may be tempting to simply call Dialectics a straight-ahead session, Kevin Sun's liner notes set the record straight: According to Sun, “neo-hard bop" is a more accurate term for this music. What's most important to note, however, is that the music is pretty irresistible, regardless of what you call it. On the sophomore album from Curtis Nowosad, the drummer delivers an invigorating program of music with a killer quintet born out of the Winnipeg native's ...



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