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Articles | Featured | Future

ALBUM REVIEWS

Dominic Miller: Absinthe

Read "Absinthe" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

Guitarist Dominic Miller''s 2017 ECM debut Silent Light was a low key affair that focused on his solo classical guitar (plus a bit of light percussion). The sequel features a full quintet with a rhythm section. A bigger sound, but with a similar impressionistic flavor. Miller's liner notes make that visual art reference explicit: as a resident of the south of France he has become fascinated with the French Impressionist painters, admiring their artistic daring. The album opens ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Liebman, Rudolph & Drake: Chi

Read "Chi" reviewed by John Ephland

Chi is another trio outing with saxophonist Dave Liebman and percussionist Adam Rudolph, the third leg on this stool being drummer Hamid Drake. It is a kind of follow-up to 2018's alternately serene and propulsive The Unknowable (RareNoise), on which Liebman and Rudolph were joined by percussionist Tatsuya Nakatani. Unlike The Unknowable, Chi was recorded in front of a live audience, at New York City's Stone in 2018. You'd never guess, though, given the superb acoustics and extremely ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

David Hazeltine: The Time Is Now

Read "The Time Is Now" reviewed by David A. Orthmann

David Hazeltine's thirty-fourth date as a leader juxtaposes his strengths as a composer, interpreter of standard material, improviser, as well as the capacity to converse and interact with his peers. There's something magical about the ways in which the pianist employs these skills, avoiding emphasizing one at the expense of the others, and in doing so fashioning tracks that are balanced, agreeable, incisive, and substantive. It's fascinating to consistently hear him chart a middle course, melding emotion and intellect while ...

RADIO

Dan Weiss Starebaby Live at BIMHUIS Amsterdam

Read "Dan Weiss Starebaby Live at BIMHUIS Amsterdam" reviewed by BIMHUIS

Alongside jazz and Indian music, Dan Weiss is equally at home in metal and electronica. The stark contrasts, but also the similarities, between these worlds fuel his band Starebaby. On the eponymous album, Weiss and co. have created fascinating works, sometimes dark and complex and sometimes dreamy and cinematic, with for example a track dedicated to Angelo Badalamenti, composer of the Twin Peaks soundtrack. Craig Taborn fender rhodes/midi controller, Matt Mitchell piano/prophet 6/modular synthesizers, Ben Monder guitar, Trevor ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Amina Figarova: Road To The Sun

Read "Road To The Sun" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

Pianist Amina Figarova, born in Baku, Azerbaijin, experienced one of the United States' darkest days--the 9/11/2001 terrorist attack--up close, from the vantage point of a friend's apartment in Brooklyn. The experience resulted in the creation of perhaps the most poignant and heartfelt artistic representations of the event, Figarova's sextet recording September Suite (Munich Records, 2005), an “Ode To Mourning" of sorts for America. Figarova has stayed busy since then, releasing Above The Clouds (Munich Music, 2008), Twelve (In ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Wadada Leo Smith: Rosa Parks: Pure Love. An Oratorio of Seven Songs

Read "Rosa Parks: Pure Love. An Oratorio of Seven Songs" reviewed by John Sharpe

Trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith's prolonged late career flowering shows no sign of abating with the creation of yet another epic work, following on the heels of his monumental Ten Freedom Summers (Cuneiform, 2012), Great Lakes Suite (TUM, 2014) and America's National Parks (Cuneiform, 2016). For his inspiration he takes the story of Rosa Parks, one of the heroines of the US Civil Rights Movement, famed for her role in the pioneering 1955 Montgomery Bus Boycott, and draws on it as ...

PROFILES

Unforgettable: Nat King Cole at 100

Read "Unforgettable: Nat King Cole at 100" reviewed by Peter Coclanis

Few cities in the U.S. have musical traditions so strong and varied as Chicago's. Although cases can be made for other cities--jny: New Orleans, jny: Detroit, New York, jny: Philadelphia, jny: Los Angeles, and jny: Memphis come to mind--in no other city is the range and depth of musical expression so strong as in Chi-Town. Other cities may dominate certain genres and discrete niches, but in no other burg does the musical tradition run so deeply in genres ranging from ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Chat Noir: Hyperuranion

Read "Hyperuranion" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

Coming up with a title for a recording is an art form, and creative oddities pop up regularly. In 1963 bassist Charles Mingus presented Black Saint and the Sinner Lady (Impulse! Records); 2014 saw the release of saxophonist Branford Marsalis' Four MFs Playin' Tunes (Marsalis Music). And now the group Chat Noir moves in a more cerebral direction--in terms of titles--with Hyperuranion... “In Plato's universe, the Hyperuranion is a realm of ideal forms where the soul waits before ...

RADIO

An Embarrassment of Riches

Read "An Embarrassment of Riches" reviewed by Jennifer DeMeritt

It's a great time to be a jazz lover, with so many fantastic new releases that it's almost overwhelming. To quote Shakespeare, it's an embarrassment of riches! This week we have handpicked some of the most exciting new music, from giants like Bill Frisell and Chris Potter to indie upstarts and international artists like Theon Cross and Hard Swing Mango. Ben Allison “Mondo Jazz Theme (feat. Ted Nash & Pyeng Threadgill)" 0:00 Theon Cross “Activate (feat. Moses ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Tom Kessler: Nuevo Valso

Read "Nuevo Valso" reviewed by Friedrich Kunzmann

For his fourth album as a leader Mexican guitarist Tom Kessler gets drummer Jochen Rückert and bassist Eivind Opsvik on board to deliver nine, self-penned and diverse pieces. Opener “Ascilina" demonstrates the treats that the trio brings to the table. Intriguing voicings on guitar, buzzing melodic lines on bass and an understated percussive structure. The production is crisp and dry. Much on Nuevo Valso presents itself in similarly subtle fashion. Kessler's guitar radiates an earthy vibrancy, giving the ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Al Hood and the H2 Sextet: Jazz Muses

Read "Jazz Muses" reviewed by Nicholas F. Mondello

There's something fascinating about the word “inspire." We know from Latin that the word derives from inspirare, meaning “to breathe" or “blow into." It is the perfect theme as presented for trumpeter Al Hood and the H2 Sextet's terrific album, Jazz Muses. Not only is Hood inspired by his Jazz Muses, but his blowing here takes inspiration full-circle. It is an enthralling and highly inspired work. Well-known in trumpet and jazz education circles, Hood is also a ...

RADIO

Jazz at 100 Hour 19: Small Groups of the 1930s – Chu, Little Jazz, Rabbit and Pres

Read "Jazz at 100 Hour 19: Small Groups of the 1930s – Chu, Little Jazz, Rabbit and Pres" reviewed by Russell Perry

While the jazz of the thirties was predominantly remembered as coming from orchestras and big bands, seminal soloists continued to record memorable music in small group settings, setting the stage for disruptive industry transitions to come in the 1940s. Small groups led by Chu Berry, Roy Eldridge, Johnny Hodges and Lester Young in this hour of Jazz at 100. Playlist Host Intro 0:00 Chu Berry And His Stompy Stevedores. “Limehouse Blues" from Chu Berry: 1937--1941 (Classics) 2:30 Chu ...