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Jazz Articles | Blog

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Steve Lehman & Sélébéyone: Sélébéyone

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Steve Lehman's critically acclaimed albums have been topping national polls for more than half a decade. It's all the more an achievement when considering Lehman's unique, cerebral and ever-changing approach to artistic creation. His most recent project, Sélébéyone takes its name from this new group that Lehman founded in 2015. It incorporates elements of spectral music--where compositions are influenced by sound waves and mathematics--rap, hip hop, electronics, and of course, jazz. The overall vibe, however, jazz rap/hip hop.

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Steve Lehman: Sélébéyone

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The remastered edition of the Beastie Boys disc Check Your Head (Capitol, 2009) has a bonus disc with a live track from Budokan, Japan. A Japanese rapper, MC Poo, raps “Microphone Check" in broken English before continuing on in Japanese. Without the language, he knew what the Beasties were about and also without the Japanese language, we know what time it is. Same can be said for American saxophonist Steve Lehman's Sélébéyone. Sélébéyone or “intersection ," is a ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Steve Lehman: Mise en Abîme

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Saxophonist Steve Lehman's 12th release as a leader/co-leader and his second one with an octet Mise en Abime is a cohesive work of intriguingly cerebral and dramatic nature. Like the title implies there are concepts that repeat, amplify and fade in the process of constructing and deconstructing the main themes of the album. On “Codes: Brice Wassy" vibraphonist Chris Dingman's sparse, deeply resonant strikes buoy Lehman's brisk and pensive alto that serves as an intro to this exquisitely ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Steve Lehman Octet: Mise en Abîme

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It's been five years since Steve Lehman's last Octet album, so we're now voracious for more expanded material. Right at the start, his alto saxophone is briefly alone, and then the entire ensemble weighs in, earthy yet finely controlled. Chris Dingman's customised vibraphone is absolutely central to the sound of these Lehman originals, most of which are notably brief and pointed in their attack. At a mere 40 minutes, this is a very succinct jazz album, in the old-time way. ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Steve Lehman: Mise en Abîme

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There's much ado about the co-mingling of styles, languages, and genres in saxophonist Steve Lehman's music. A good amount of what's been written about his work has focused on his use of spectral music techniques and live electronics, the specially-made microtonal vibraphone that Chris Dingman plays, and the way Lehman mixes it all together to create his own brand of creative music. It's completely understandable that those would be the talking points, but the music really speaks for itself.

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Steve Lehman: Mise en Abîme

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Composer/saxophonist Steve Lehman's credentials are as unique as his music. A Fulbright scholar with a PhD in composition, his on the job training has been at the hands of a diverse group of teachers including saxophone legends Jackie McLean and Anthony Braxton. A New York native, Lehman garnered widespread praise with the groundbreaking Travail, Transformation and Flow (Pi Recordings, 2009) and he returns with the same octet on Mise en Abîme. Lehman continues to apply a scientific approach to his ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Steve Lehman Trio: Dialect Fluorescent

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Among studies with new music icons, reedman Anthony Braxton and trombonist George Lewis, alto saxophonist Steve Lehman has emerged as an important figures in the recent shift towards a more radical spin on jazz. Pushing the envelope is a common thrust for Lehman, who historically enjoys working within a tight-knit trio setting. On this release, he tenders a fervent mix of jazz standards and originals. Lehman's chromatic attack features a sweet-toned sound, often dissected with rippling flurries and ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Steve Lehman: Dialect Fluorescent

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Currently a doctoral candidate in Music Composition at Columbia University, alto saxophonist Steve Lehman's previous releases for Pi Recordings include Travail, Transformation and Flow (2009), On Meaning (2007) and Demian as Post-Human (2005). On these cerebral endeavors, the former Fulbright scholar and Wesleyan graduate engaged his penchant for fusing vintage hard bop-style melodies with post-M-Base rhythmic structures--modernist affairs that deftly balanced nostalgic reverie with futuristic innovation.Compared to the high-minded conceptualism of Lehman's previous albums (the most recent explored ...


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