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INTERVIEWS

André Ménard: 40 Years at the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal

Read "André Ménard: 40 Years at the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

André Ménard is the co-founder and Artistic Director of the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal. Ranked as the world's largest jazz festival in the Guinness World Records, the festival celebrates its 40th anniversary with the 2019 edition. Ménard has announced his retirement this year, marking it as a personal milestone as well. A legendary concert promoter, he is a passionate music fan above all. Our conversation ranged from the beginning of the festival to the present, covering memorable performances ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Soundscape Orchestra: Nexus

Read "Nexus" reviewed by Jakob Baekgaard

The big city is a place of wonder and estrangement. It has its own pulse and sound. Individuals disappear into crowds, and yet the city is also the scene of individual freedom, a potential theatre of endless roles and masks which are carried with conviction as people move through a technological landscape that seems to change all the time. The complex identity of the city is captured musically on Nexus, the debut from the Swedish six-piece ensemble Soundscape ...

INTERVIEWS

Moers Festival Interviews: Scatter The Atoms That Remain

Read "Moers Festival Interviews: Scatter The Atoms That Remain" reviewed by Martin Longley

Scatter The Atoms That Remain are set to be quite possibly the most jazzed combo at this year's Moers Festival, in Germany, but this simply illustrates the high degree of unfaithfulness displayed by many of its attending artists towards the jazz tradition. There are a mass of Moersfest acts who possess some sort of jazz-rootedness, but many of them also have other fingers deep inside rock, electronic, global-ethnic, hip-hop, or moderne composition. Not that Moers calls itself a jazz festival ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Marco Colonna: The Second Coming

Read "The Second Coming" reviewed by Daniel Barbiero

In improvised music no less than in composed classical music, the period from the 1950s forward has seen the invention and development of new and expansive instrumental techniques. Along with the expansion of technical resources has come a corresponding evolution of musical poetics grounded in the idea that performance techniques and gestures, when engaged with a certain degree of self-consciousness, can serve as the fundamental material basis for an expressive musicality. Such is the case with the music of The ...

CHOICE CUTS

Chet Baker I'll Remember April, Zoot Sims Over the Rainbow, and Lorez Alexandria This Could Be the Start of Something Big

Read "Chet Baker I'll Remember April, Zoot Sims Over the Rainbow, and Lorez Alexandria This Could Be the Start of Something Big" reviewed by Mark Barnett

Choice Cuts is a new column that I spun off from Getting Into Jazz. Your butcher notwithstanding, we're defining a “Choice Cut" as an outstanding track from an otherwise unremarkable CD (or vinyl record); a track so good it justifies adding the disc to your collection. Here are a trio to start with... Chet Baker, “I'll Remember April" (From the album Chet Baker in Paris, Verve Records 1956) Given the ups and downs of Baker's ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Frame Trio: Luminária

Read "Luminária" reviewed by John Sharpe

With freely improvised music, you have to trust that the performers will take you somewhere you want to go and that the journey itself will be as worthwhile as the destination, if not more so. Those expectations are more than met by the Frame Trio on Luminária, the first album by the collective of trumpeter Luís Vicente, guitarist Marcelo dos Reis and bassist Nils Vermeulen. Both bastions of the Portuguese creative music scene, Vicente and dos Reis share a common ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Moppa Elliott: Jazz Band/Rock Band/Dance Band

Read "Jazz Band/Rock Band/Dance Band" reviewed by Jerome Wilson

Bassist Moppa Elliott is best known as the leader of the surrealistic jazz group, Mostly Other People Do The Killing, but his musical universe, encompassing work with symphony orchestras and new music ensembles, stretches much farther than that band's frantic music. This is reflected in this 2 CD set of Elliott leading three different types of groups, a jazz band, a rock band and a dance band. All three ensembles continue Elliott's off-center sensibilities, but in different ways. ...

THE JAZZ LIFE

To Dream the Impossible Dream: the quest for a music education

Read "To Dream the Impossible Dream: the quest for a music education" reviewed by Peter Rubie

I've been thinking a lot about how jazz is taught recently. I realize now, my search for a real musical education was not a simple thing, but a series of life changing moments. My son, on the other hand, is planning to study music in college after he finishes high school. Though it would fill his grandparents with dread were they still around to see it, to Ben and his peers it is a natural choice, focused on finding the ...

THE VINYL POST

Coltrane 58: The Prestige Recordings

Read "Coltrane 58: The Prestige Recordings" reviewed by C. Andrew Hovan

Some fifty-two years since his death, the shadow of John Coltrane looms large in the minds of many jazz fans and musicians. Over the past few years this has been aided and abetted by the fact that his music continues to be repackaged. In the case of last year's Both Directions at Once, some previously unissued sides even brought further clarity to the saxophonist's development at Impulse Records in the mid '60s. Concurrent with the fascination of all-things-Coltrane ...

LIVE REVIEWS

The Ben Paterson Trio At The Jazz Corner

Read "The Ben Paterson Trio At The Jazz Corner" reviewed by Martin McFie

Ben Paterson Trio The Jazz Corner Hilton Head Island, SC May 10-11, 2019 The Ben Paterson Trio set off with the lilting Ray Brown tune “FSR" (For Sonny Rollins). By the time they had finished the very first piece the audience was fully engaged in the performance. Paterson often includes soulful blues in his sets and likes to sing some of the numbers. Next, they played “Nobody Knows You When You're Down ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Paul Bley / Gary Peacock / Paul Motian: When Will The Blues Leave

Read "When Will The Blues Leave" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Had Paul Bley, Gary Peacock and Paul Motian recorded together more consistently, they would have been considered among the best piano trios in modern jazz history. The three first recorded on the ECM collection Paul Bley with Gary Peacock (1970), a compilation from the 1960s where three of the eight tracks had Billy Elgart on drums. It would be decades before the trio reunited in the studio, and again, ECM captured the session, Not Two, Not One (1998). When Will ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Judy Wexler: Crowded Heart

Read "Crowded Heart" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

For her fifth album, Judy Wexler has embraced a concept that's oddly foreign in the jazz vocal realm. Instead of walking her way down the all-too-familiar avenues for singers--classic Broadway-cum-jazz material, canonical works written by revered jazz figures, pop tunes reshaped with harmonic facelifts, self-penned originals--she takes the road less traveled by focusing on the work of jazz composers thriving in the present. In doing so she magnifies the importance of these artists, highlights material worthy of greater attention, and ...