Articles by Dan McClenaghan

Daily articles carefully curated by the All About Jazz staff. Read our popular and future articles.

ALBUM REVIEW

Sonar With David Torn: Tranceportation (Volume 2)

Read "Tranceportation (Volume 2)" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

In 2018 avant-garde guitarist David Torn fell in with some good company, the Swiss group Sonar, founded by guitarist Stephan Thelen. The result was Vortex (RareNoiseRecords), featuring Torn, who, in his words, contributed: “Textural events that can sometimes go on for minutes...and then the solo voice becomes almost like the cherry on top." Sonar is a two tritone guitar, tritone bass and drums quartet. Torn makes it three guitars. Their music, like that of Thelen and company's Swiss ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Olivier Le Goas & Reciprocity: Onramp Of Heaven Dreams

Read "Onramp Of Heaven Dreams" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

A blindfolded spin of French drummer Olivier Le Goas & Reciprocity's Onramp Of Heaven Dreams says the spirit of guitarist Pat Metheny is hanging around. The lineup—guitar, piano, bass and drums—mirrors that of Metheny's early ECM Records such as Watercolors (1977) and American Garage (1979), and the disc's title itself nods to Metheny's Offramp (ECM Records,1982). This in the year 2020, when Metheny released a career highlight, From this Place (Nonesuch Records). Olivier's sound has a clean, sharp-edged ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Cathlene Pineda: Rainbow Baby

Read "Rainbow Baby" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

Charlie Parker said: “If you don't live it, it won't come out of your horn." In Cathlene Pineda's case, it could be said: “If you don't live it, it won't come out of your piano, or your compositional pen." Motherhood is a big part of what Pineda has lived, an equilibrium of emotion on the spectrum of sorrow and joy resulting--over a four year period--from two devastating miscarriages and two joyous births. Now, she celebrates that experience in ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Rudresh Mahanthappa: Hero Trio

Read "Hero Trio" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

In the chordless trio tradition of tenor saxophonist Sonny Rollins on A Night At The Village Vanguard (Blue Note, 1957) and alto saxophonist Lee Konitz with his Motion (Verve, 1961), alto saxophonist Rudresh Mahanthappa offers up his Hero Trio, a saxophone, bass and drums outing nodding to his influential musical heros. Mahanthappa began his career in the shadow of Vijay Iyer, playing on the pianist's Panoptic Modes (Red Giant, 2001), Blood Sutra (Pi Recordings, 2003), and Reimagining (Savoy ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Joe Fielder's Big Sackbut: Live In Graz

Read "Live In Graz" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

Trombonist Joe Fielder offers up Joe Fielder's Big Sackbut--Live In Graz, the group's second recording, a follow-up to the 2012 eponymous Yellow Sound Label debut and 2013's Sackbut Stomp (Multiphonics Music). The line-up is three trombones (Ryan Keberle, Luis Bonilla and Fielder) and a tuba (Jon Sass), so it isn't hard to imagine what the sound is like: bold, brassy, full bodied, rich-toned. And surprisingly edgy at times. So what is a sackbut, anyways? It sounds like the ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Peripheral Vision: Irrational Revelation And Mutual Humiliation

Read "Irrational Revelation And Mutual Humiliation" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

The Toronto-based quartet Peripheral Vision offers up Irrational Revelation and Mutual Humiliation, the group's fifth release in a discography that began in 2014 with Sheer Tyranny Of Will (Step3). The leaders, guitarist Don Scott and bassist Michael Herring, anchor a tight rhythm section with drummer Nick Fraser, rounded out with alto saxophonist Trevor Hogg. Distinctively modern in sound, toe tapping grooves abound, powering ahead with a momentum as in synch as that of Chick Corea's' Elektric Band. Irrational ...

Shining A Light On Pianist Ron Thomas

Read "Shining A Light On Pianist Ron Thomas" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

Pianist / composer Ron Thomas (b. 1942), was introduced to the piano by his father, Buddy, a self-taught player who learned the art of the ivories by analyzing piano roll performances. Ron was, according to his biography, three or four years old at the time. Those early lessons took root, and then along came Marilyn Monroe. In 1957, Thomas had the good fortune to see The Seven Year Itch, a film that featured Monroe, and a soundtrack that included Sergei ...


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