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Articles by Mark Corroto

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Iluso Records: DIY from two dreamers

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Australian drummer Michael Caratti and Spanish-born New York-based guitarist Álvaro Domene founded the record label Iluso in 2013 to release their quartet recording Gran Masa. The pair found they shared similar interests while in school at Middlesex University in London. And why not put out their own music? That way they could control the content and retain all the rights. Additionally, with the decline of brick-and-mortar record shops and the increase in internet digital downloads, there are very few reasons ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Miguel Zenon: Yo Soy La Tradicion

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As a rule, it is best to encounter a piece of music with an appreciation of its provenance. For jazz listeners, even though the act of listening is an exercise in discovery, roots are rarely an issue. That is, until an artist delivers something novel. Such is the case with Yo Soy La Tradicion by saxophonist Miguel Zenón. The Guggenheim and MacArthur Foundation Fellowships recipient was commissioned in 2016 by the Hyde Park Jazz Festival to compose a suite for ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Per Gärdin / Travassos / Marco Franco: Oblique (trio)

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You've come to expect a music review to direct you to pay close attention to a particular passage or solo in a recording. But what if a commentator suggested the best manner to appreciate a recording was to dissipate one's attention and dissolve it into the ether? How would you then experience the music? Would it be through touch, taste, or sight? Certainly not through smell. The trio of Per Gärdin, Travassos, and Marco Franco want you to ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Bobby Naughton / Leo Smith / Perry Robinson: The Haunt

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You might have heard the cheer go up with the reissue of The Haunt, vibraphonist Bobby Naughton's 1976 trio recording with trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith and clarinetist Perry Robinson. Crate diggers have treasured the long out-of-print original release on Naughton's Otic Records. Thanks to Lithuania's NoBusiness Records, we have this important document remastered, plus an additional alternate take of “Slant." Turning our wayback machine to the mid-1970s, creative jazz was being supplanted by jazz/rock and fusion. Miles Davis ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Hearts & Minds: Electroradiance

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It took millions and millions of years of evolution to produce dinosaurs that weighed 40 tons. Who'd have thunk it possible that those creatures are the ancestors of modern birds? Same consideration might be applied to the trio Heart & Minds. That is, if you're not into the whole creationist jazz scene. Some of those dinosaurs appeared to be a bizarre patchwork of feathers, armor, and teeth. Really big teeth. But there was an internal logic to these evolutionary adaptations, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Charles Pillow Large Ensemble: Electric Miles

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You thought not, but you can put the genie back in the bottle. What we're talking about is the specter unleashed by Miles Davis with Bitches Brew (Columbia, 1970). Davis' expanded lineup for BB with ten-plus musicians, including the electric pianos of Joe Zawinul, Chick Corea, and Larry Young, Bennie Maupin playing bass clarinet, a young guitarist John McLaughlin, two bassists, percussion, and more percussion, and oh yeah, Wayne Shorter's saxophone was ever present. Charles Pillow did that with his ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Miles Okazaki: Work: The Complete Compositions of Thelonious Monk

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The best way to embark upon Miles Okazaki's six-volume Work: The Complete Compositions of Thelonious Monk is the same manner you might approach Herman Melville's American masterpiece Moby-Dick; or, The Whale. Like Moby-Dick with its 135 chapters (and epilogue), Work is a Brobdingnagian accomplishment. Okazaki performs the complete Thelonious Monk songbook. 70 tunes in total. The accomplishment here is not the 4 hours and 44 minutes of music, but Okazaki's dedication to the Monk oeuvre. The only other ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jason Stein's Locksmith Isidore: After Caroline

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By 2018 he doesn't have to do it. Do what? Prove himself, and maybe also demonstrate the bass clarinet worthy of leading an ensemble. Jason Stein has the bona fides these days, proof being his much admired quartet and trio Locksmith Isidore. His trio was the opening act for his sister, comedian Amy Schumer's 10,000-seat arena tour the past few years and some of that rock star juju clings to After Caroline, the fourth release by Locksmith Isidore.

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Steve Coleman and Five Elements: Live at the Village Vanguard, Vol. 1 (The Embedded Sets)

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Do you long for the days when jazz was punk? Not meaning music that is loud and out-of-control. but punk as in innovative, nonconformist, and seditious. One hundred years ago, the music of Louis Armstrong was punk, and a few decades later so was Charlie Parker's revolutionary bebop. You probably did not witness those rebellions, nor Ornette Coleman's free jazz of the 1960s. What would you give to be there for the “what-did-I-just-hear" moment? Steve Coleman and Five ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Gunter Baby Sommer: Baby's Party

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The music from the German duo of Günter Baby Sommer and Till Brönner is best described as gestural, meaning the pair utilizes posture and body movement to effect an oratory--in this case the somatic nature of Sommer's drum and percussion work and the flow of breath through Brönner's trumpet and flugelhorn. On the occasion of Sommer's 75th birthday year Brönner, nearly thirty years his junior, joins the master for eleven inventive and sometimes muscular tracks. Opening with “Apéro ...