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ALBUM REVIEWS

Pureum Jin: The Real Blue

Read "The Real Blue" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Although alto saxophonist Pureum Jin would no doubt shrug her shoulders and ask “what's the big deal," the fact remains that she is a South Korean woman playing American jazz and doing so in a way that affirms conclusively that the country's inbred art form is not only universal but gender-neutral. On her debut album, the rather recent graduate of the Manhattan School of Music sounds as assured and comfortable in the idiom as almost any native-born player—male or female--you'd ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Dan McCarthy: City Abstract

Read "City Abstract" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

The concept of homecoming is inextricably linked to the music that Dan McCarthy presents on City Abstract. Recorded in May of 2019, shortly after he had returned to his native Toronto after fifteen years in New York, this date finds the vibraphonist bowing to two of his biggest influences: pianist Carla Bley and vibraphonist Gary Burton. Those lodestars provide solid inspiration and clear direction for McCarthy, who works his way through originals and a few choice covers with a balanced ...

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Hiromi: Spectrum

Read "Spectrum" reviewed by Mike Jurkovic

A beacon for jazz to come, since her adrenaline-pumped debut Another Mind (Telarc, 2003), pianist-composer Hiromi Uehara launches herself into her fourth decade with Spectrum, her second album alone at her Yamaha. The music, she hopes, celebrates the closing of one decade and the opening of the next and, without pause, it does, brimming with all the capricious three-dimensional imagination and invention that indelibly mark many fine recordings--her first solo Place To Be (Telarc, 2010), Voice (Telarc, 2011), ...

RADIO

Into Each Life Some Rain Must Fall

Read "Into Each Life Some Rain Must Fall" reviewed by Mary Foster Conklin

This week we feature new releases from flutist Haruna Fukazawa, vocalists Svetlana, Emma Frank and Jazzmeia Horn, soprano saxophonist and flutist Jane Bunnett & Maqueque, plus a rediscovered Miles Davis recording, with birthday shout outs to Doris Tauber (composer of “Them There Eyes"), Claire Martin, Tom Wopat, Alyssa Allgood and Lorraine Feather, among others. Playlist The DIVA Jazz Orchestra “East Coast Andy" from The Diva Jazz Orchestra 25th Anniversary Project (ArtistShare) 00:00 Tom Wopat “I Won't Dance" from ...

BOOK REVIEWS

Solid State: The Story of Abbey Road And The End of The Beatles

Read "Solid State: The Story of Abbey Road And The End of The Beatles" reviewed by Doug Collette

Solid State: The Story of Abbey Road And The End of the Beatles Kenneth Womack 288 Pages ISBN: #978-1501746857 Cornell University Press 2019 Reverberating with all manner of interpretations, Solid State is a magnificently ironic title for a book purporting to tell The Story of Abbey Road and The End of the Beatles. Or is it simply to be read at face value? Author Kenneth Womack proffers the technical advancement at Abbey Road ...

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Keith Jarrett: Munich 2016

Read "Munich 2016" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

The second coming of Keith Jarrett—post-Chronic Fatigue Syndrome—was well behind him by the time he performed in Munich, Germany in 2016. The piano prodigy is captured in ECM's home town at a Philharmonic Hall solo concert at the end of his European tour. His improvisational skills in top form, he displays his genius across twelve extemporaneous compositions and three encores, on the two-disc set Munich 2016. For this recording, Jarrett broke with his frequent practice of live improvisations ...

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Per Mathisen: Sounds of 3 Edition 2

Read "Sounds of 3 Edition 2" reviewed by Geno Thackara

The power of three indeed proved to be a magic charm for Per Mathisen on the first Sounds of 3 (Losen, 2016), so it's probably only natural that he'd revisit the format sooner or later. What's more of a surprise, perhaps, is how things change. Where that recording was a loud and brash slice of jazz-rock, its colorful sequel slides more toward the jazzy side of that equation. This recording actually tones down the wattage just a little from the ...

RADIO

Paradox Trio - The Balkan Side of Downtown NYC

Read "Paradox Trio - The Balkan Side of Downtown NYC" reviewed by Ludovico Granvassu

At some point in the '90s Balkan-tinged jazz was all the rage in the downtown scene that gravitated around the Knitting Factory and the Bell Café. Whereas many of the bands that were at the forefront of that movement are gone, a quarter century later, the Paradox Trio and its unique blend of jazz and creative improvisation with the melodies, modes, and rhythms of Balkan, klezmer, Celtic, and Gypsy folk music traditions are stronger than ever. Featuring Matt Darriau on ...

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lisa liu: Introducing...Lisa Liu

Read "Introducing...Lisa Liu" reviewed by Daniel Lehner

Lisa Liu's Introducing...“ is a great example of one of the subtly exciting things about “vintage" styles: that, no matter how observant, studious and sometimes even intentionally conservative the endeavor can be, human nature ends up evolving them anyway. Liu's general genre is called many things--trad jazz, gypsy jazz, et. al.—but the album is not merely a meticulous recreation of a period, but a capably produced amalgam of different pre-bop styles that she handles both dutifully and skillfully.

ALBUM REVIEWS

Gregg Allman: Laid Back Deluxe Edition

Read "Laid Back Deluxe Edition" reviewed by Doug Collette

Gregg Allman's first solo album, Laid Back (Capricorn, 1973), is the ideal candidate for a Deluxe Edition reissue and remaster. Not only is the record an exquisite, one-of-a-kind piece of work in its original form, but the backstory is eminently worth telling as it sheds light not only on the creation of the album itself, but the fundamental relationship, at the time of the recording, between the Allman Brothers Band and its surviving namesake. Kudos to the curators, ...

LIVE REVIEWS

12 Points Festival 2019

Read "12 Points Festival 2019" reviewed by Henning Bolte

Bimhuis 12 Points Festival Amsterdam, Netherlands September 25-28, 2019 Jazz, as a diverse and heterogeneous field by nature, is represented at each 12 Points edition by young musicians and groups (age 35) with a strong artistic profile and solid and attractive performance capabilities. The festival represents in a nutshell what the next generation is willing and able to contribute. The emphasis is not so much on assumed audience compatibility/acceptability but rather on originality, artistic challenge, ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Kit Downes: Dreamlife of Debris

Read "Dreamlife of Debris" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Kit Downes' ECM debut marked a substantial departure from his earlier recordings with saxophonist Tomas Challenger. Wedding Music (Loop Records, 2013) and Vyamanikal (Slip Imprint, 2016) were rhythmically complex with abstruse melodies that tended toward repetitive patterns and drones. With his ECM title Obsidian (2018), Downes, still on organ, worked in a more solidly constructed environment, imparting Celtic and hymnal qualities. Challenger appeared on only one track of the otherwise solo recording. Downes returns to ECM with Dreamlife of Debris, ...


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