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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Ensemble Pamplemousse: This Is The Uplifting Part

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This Is The Uplifting Part by Ensemble Pamplemousse, is an unusual album not just in content, but also in format. Offered only as a video release, it is available on a limited USB stick (encased in a replication of a cassette) or as a video download. A non-conventional collection, the album incorporates acoustics and electronics, extended technique and an assortment of non-musical sounds. Presented as it is, in the video format, it is as much performance art as music, though ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Vlatko Stefanovski: The Big Band Orchestra of the Slovenian Armed Forces feat. Vlatko Stefanovski

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During the course of guitarist Vlatko Stefanovski's illustrious career, he has constantly sought fresh ways to express himself or to reconfigure his music. Not a year would go by and he would either be seen fronting his own electric guitar trio, joining forces with other performers either the famous duo with Miroslav Tadic or the Kings of Strings trio (with guitarists Tommy Emmanuel and Stochelo Rosenberg) various film music projects. That frequently gets him in hot water with audiences that ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Miroslav Vitous: Ziljabu Nights - Live at Theater Gutersloh

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This live album celebrates the 8th edition of the German record label's European Jazz Legends series, culminating in a book to be published in 2018. And each album is finalized with an interview track. So, it would make sense that eminent Czech bassist and co-founder of Weather Report, Miroslav Vitous would be included in the progression of this series. Other than drummer Roberto Gatto, the quintet comprises the same personnel who appeared on the successful Music of Weather Report (ECM, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Adam Rudolph's Moving Pictures: Glare of the Tiger

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Back in the late 1960s/early 70s, maybe we weren't ready for it. The Beatles explored psychedelia and Indian music, as did a plugged-in Miles Davis. Then came John McLaughlin's Shakti, Don Cherry, Yusef Lateef, and Joe Zawinul's Weather Report, to name a few heads of state. The music they played, which now might be filed under 'World Music,' was not meant to be ghettoized as such. Miles would have just called it “m-f'ing music." Maybe we should, too.

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Super Hi-Fi: Super Hi Fi Plays Nirvana

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Super Hi-Fi founder and bassist Ezra Gale established his cassette-and download-only label Very Special Recordings to give his compatriots and their fans the chance to take a chance. “The fact that cassettes are cheap to manufacture and to buy is huge, because we can take chances and just put out things we love, which we wouldn't be able to do if they cost as much as records," he explains. “And people who see something that's only five or six bucks ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Festival International de Jazz de Port-au-Prince, 2017 Part 1

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Festival International de Jazz de Port-au-Prince Port-au-Prince, Haiti March 4-11, 2017 Haiti: the only nation in the world established as the result of a slave revolt; home of Vodou. Haiti: poorest country in the Western Hemisphere; subject to devastating hurricanes and earthquakes. Most potential visitors to Haiti are likely to focus on the second view of the country, especially after the catastrophic 2010 earthquake which caused massive building collapse and loss of life in the capital ...

MY BLUE NOTE OBSESSION

Walter Davis Jr.: Davis Cup - 1959

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Every now and then, I hear a musician in a band and I think, “Damn, can we get rid of the other guys and just hear this one by himself?" That was my immediate thought after listening to Davis Cup, a hard bop cooker from 1959. Walter Davis Jr. is a pianist with a slim discography. He recorded exactly one Blue Note CD as a leader--this one, his debut--and appeared mostly as a sideman on other people's records. ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

EchoTest: From Two Balconies

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When is a bass duo not a bass duo? For Julie Slick and Marco Machera, the general answer is “whenever we want." Technically they're both electric bassists foremost, but that's far from the only tool in their box. The bottom end was prominent when they first joined forces on Fourth Dementia (self-produced, 2014), but already there was a noticeable emphasis on bending their strings to make guitar and synth sounds too. When they adopted the band name EchoTest with Le ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Eka trio: Eka

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The Malmo based Eka trio is a collaborative group that blends together rock inspired rhythms and jazzy spontaneity to create vibrant and impressionistic music. The eponymous debut consists of eleven captivating originals that are thematically alike but with sufficient distinctiveness as to result in a conceptually cohesive recording without resorting to redundancy.The tracks are simultaneously intimate and cinematic with seamless synergy among the members of the band. The lullaby like “Blues Screen Blues," for instance, opens with Swedish ...


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