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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Unhinged Sextet: Don't Blink

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Unhinged Sextet is a strong candidate for the best band you'll never hear in a live performance. The members of this cooperative ensemble are spread out across the country, earning their daily bread by training the next generation of musicians, with an emphasis on jazz studies, at various universities. They join forces for brief periods in between other commitments, woodshedding material and recording, before returning to their respective home bases. George Bernard Shaw's often quoted maxim, “Those ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Unhinged Sextet: Don't Blink

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When the members of the collective Unhinged Sextet gathered to record their first album Clarity (OA2 Records, 2015) it was the first time they had played together, despite long-standing mutual associations. Don't Blink continues to demonstrate the chemistry that characterized their first meeting. Once again the music is all original, with contributions from five of the six group members-- and the compositions inspire consistently good solos. Pianist Michael Kocour's title tune kicks things off with a swinging swagger. ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Unhinged Sextet: Clarity

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The mainstream of jazz could use more recordings like Clarity, a recently released venture by the cooperative Unhinged Sextet. On every track there's something genuinely enjoyable and thought provoking going on, yet the disc doesn't suffer from information overload. The sense of excessive exertion, overt athleticism, sanctimonious references to key points of the jazz tradition--not to mention the insular vibe that's part and parcel of so many jazz records--are nowhere to be found. Most importantly, the Sextet sustains a recognizable ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Unhinged Sextet: Clarity

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The debut recording from one of the most exciting new groups around, Clarity documents a boppish session of straight ahead traditional jazz delivered by the Unhinged Sextet, a well-seasoned cast of players from all corners of the country who have joined forces for this dynamic recording. Led by pianist Michael Kocour, Director of Jazz Studies at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona, where the project was recorded, the band is comprised of a collection of educators and professional musicians from ...

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Two OA2 Records Releases Featuring Pianist Michael Kocour

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Two recent releases from OA2 Records feature piano playing and production by Michael Kocour, a longtime member of the Chicago jazz scene (and a regular sideman with the late James Moody and Benny Golson). He has been director of jazz studies at Arizona State University since 2004. Unhinged Sextet Clarity OA2 Records 2015 Unhinged Sextet sounds like many things--for example: swinging, cohesive, hot--but “unhinged" is not one of them. The ...


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