Jazz Articles

Daily articles including interviews, profiles, live reviews, film reviews and more... all carefully curated by the All About Jazz staff. You can find more articles by searching our website, see what's trending on our popular articles page or read articles ahead of their published dates on our future articles page.

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Album Review

Elliott Sharp: Syzygy

Read "Syzygy" reviewed by Don Phipps


Immaculately recorded by Italian label Dodicilune, Elliott Sharp's Syzygy continues Sharp's explorations of spontaneous and improvisatory sound. He and his collaborators offer up studio versions of Syzygy on the first disc and live versions of the material on disc two. As much modern classical as abstract jazz, it is the musical textures and abstractions that give the album its dream-like eeriness. The instrumentation offers a twist as well—eschewing drums, Sharp populates his music with computer devices, “objects," and ...

6

Album Review

Elliott Sharp: Chansons Du Crepuscule

Read "Chansons Du Crepuscule" reviewed by Don Phipps


In Chansons Du Crepuscule, the French multi-genre vocalist, harpist, composer and improvisor Helene Breschand hooks up with the multi-genre New York guitarist Elliott Sharp to yield spell-binding music of the first order. This fascinating collaboration crosses musical genres as easily as a nuthatch jumps from a birch tree to a cedar and then to a hickory. But since jazz has elements of all music embedded within its frame work, it's not a significant leap to suggest that Chansons Du Crepuscule ...

5

Album Review

Elliott Sharp: Err Guitar

Read "Err Guitar" reviewed by Don Phipps


Is this music from another world? Dense, complex, innovative, and chock full of improvisation, Elliott Sharp's Err Guitar seeks to establish a whole new vocabulary for the instrument. Joined by the significant guitarist Mary Halvorson and the always willing to experiment Marc Ribot, Sharp elevates the guitar trio using Stockhausen-like effects that blur rhythm and sound--offering a unique perspective on the language of the guitar and not just its musical sensitivities. All three guitarists contribute compositionally to the effort.

2

Album Review

Elliott Sharp: Dialectrical

Read "Dialectrical" reviewed by John Sharpe


Dialectrical constitutes the third entry in the discography of Elliott Sharp's most jazz-focused outfit, following on from the eponymous debut Aggregat (Clean Feed, 2012), and subsequent Quintet (Clean Feed, 2013). Although perhaps best known for his idiosyncratic guitar work, Sharp here demonstrates his chops as an adept reedman, with a talented NYC crew on board. Special mention must go to grizzled drummer Barry Altschul replacing Ches Smith who helmed the engine room on the previous two outings. Other constants are ...

6

Album Review

Elliott Sharp: Port Bou

Read "Port Bou" reviewed by Mark Sullivan


Composer/multi-instrumentalist Elliott Sharp chose a dramatic subject for Port Bou: the last minutes in the life of philosopher Walter Benjamin at Port-Bou (a town in Catalonia, Spain) as he was fleeing Nazi-occupied France. This is a man preparing to commit suicide, so the music is appropriately intense. I'm reminded of Laurie Anderson's performance piece about Difficult Music. Some will find this music hard to listen to, not because of the noisy avant-garde content (there's only a little), but due to ...

4

Album Review

Elliott Sharp: Sharp? Monk? Sharp! Monk!

Read "Sharp? Monk? Sharp! Monk!" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey


Polymath musician Elliott Sharp fears nothing creatively. He will as readily dismantle the blues into its atomic components as he will Western European classical music. Or jazz, for that matter. On Sharp? Monk? Sharp! Monk!, Sharp attempts the impossible, that is: a post-modern dissection of five Thelonious Monk pieces, played on guitar no less. Ex vivo Monk could be seen as one of the first musicians to apply post-modern method to music. Fearlessly, Monk readily expanded the tonal and harmonic ...

8

Film Review

Elliott Sharp: Ostryepolya

Read "Elliott Sharp: Ostryepolya" reviewed by Eyal Hareuveni


Elliott Sharp / Scott Fields Ostryepolya PanRec / NotTwo Records 2013 The musical meeting of innovative guitarists Elliott Sharp and Scott Fields came by coincidence. Both were aware of each other's work for many years, but the opportunity of playing as a duo never arose. Each is a master composer and improviser with extensive experience accumulated in various formats. Sharp pioneered the usage of fractal geometry, chaos theory, genetic metaphors and using ...


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