Articles by Anthony Shaw

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Papanosh: A Chicken in a Bottle

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Papanosh originate in the northern French city of Rouen and have been together over 10 years. This second CD of somewhat discordant, deconstructed hard bop is another example of their concept of an imagined folklore, a new musical tradition created together by musicians and listeners in their shared synergy. It involves widely varied music that, with its sudden twists and surprises, seems at times to be being played with five tongues in five respective cheeks. With most melodies revolving ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Sväng: Hauptbahnhof

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From the outset, Sväng's eighth album Hauptbahnhof evokes a bygone age of often gilded life, leisured strolls, and acoustic instrumentation. Or is it just the evocative sound of their four harmonicas that immediately conjures marching men, wartime truces and so forth? In any case this album of idiosyncratic tunes, and one song, does more than its best to show that four professionals with their combined harmonic range of over six octaves, can take the harmonica anywhere on the musical spectrum. ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Equally Stupid: Escape from The Unhappy Society

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This second album by Equally Stupid sees the same transnational crew of three gents working in the same vein as their first Exploding Head, blending Rögnvaldsson's astringent guitar with saxophonist Pauli Lyytinen's this time more mellow tenor. David Meier is still holding things together with a strong physicality behind the drums, but from the cover onwards there's obviously a major change of style. I wonder if they have been listening to John Cale or Arvo Pert as ...

LIVE REVIEWS

We Jazz Festival 2016

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We Jazz Festival 2016 Multiple venues Helsinki, Finland December 4-11, 2016 The winter We Jazz 'event' has been running for four years now, and founding mentor Matti Nives is somewhat challenged to find suitable new venues to take his artists to, having established a tradition of taking jazz to improbable places. These have included private flats, far-flung small venues as well as traditional medium sized concert halls in Helsinki. Despite these precedents, this year ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

High Noon: High Noon

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Finnish guitarist Kalle Kalima has been making records of a distinctly off the wall hue since he started his professional career over 15 years ago in Helsinki. This orientation took him to study in Berlin where he has been based for the last decade. Working mainly with German musicians, he has seen success in Europe both as a cutting edge instrumentalist and composer, but surprisingly this latest album sees him working specifically with covers of country classics. Focusing particularly on ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Helsinki Festival 2016

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Love Proge Helsinki Festival (Huvila Tent) Helsinki, Finland August 28, 2016 Richard Thompson couldn't have said it better than he wrote in Fairport Convention's first major single Meet on the Ledge: If you really mean it, it all comes round again. That was in 1968, two years after three central players in the Finnish music scene, including the jazz trumpeter and impresario Henrik Otto Donner, set up the label that was to ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jukka Perko Avara: Invisible Man

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The three major names in the Finnish jazz world featured here come from three very different corners of the firmament. Jukka Perko achieved global recognition as a youth playing alto and soprano saxophone with Thelonius Monk, while guitarists Teemu Viinikainen and Jarmo Saari are better known in Scandinavia, the latter also for his proggy and pop excursions with XL Finland and Von Hertzen Brothers. Together on this disc they combine these orientations to play an assortment of self-penned and cover ...

LIVE REVIEWS

The Aki Rissanen Trio plays April Jazz, Espoo, Finland

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The Aki Rissanen Trio Louhi Club April Jazz Espoo, Finland April 4, 2016 Espoo in southern Finland is nominally a city, having its own emblem, transportation system and council though for most people in the vicinity of Helsinki it's merely a close suburb of the metropolis. However every spring it comes into its own hosting the April Jazz festival mainly in the Tapiola Gardens area, heralding the start of the yearly Finnish festival music ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Maciej Fortuna: Zośka

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Maciej Fortuna is obviously a power to be reckoned with on the Polish music scene, as not only the founder and director of Fortuna-music and a teacher in Poznan's Academy of Music but as a leading jazz trumpeter in the country. On this disc he has invited three stalwart American musicians to join him and together his bandmates have selected their repertoire of six nineteenth century Polish folk tunes, to which are added four of Fortuna's own compositions. It makes ...


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