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Jazz Articles

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Noah Preminger: Some Other Time

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After several releases, tenor saxophonist Noah Preminger's uniqueness has become more evident. In large part, this curve is due to Preminger's own patient development of a creative process; part is an individual style but much of the appeal is in how he creates around the broader dynamics of his various groups. What has been consistent, from the modern post-bop/hard-bop of Dry Bridge Road (Nowt Records, 2008) through the raucous swing of Pivot: Live at the 55 Bar (Self-Produced, 2015), is ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Elektra Kurtis: Bridges From The East

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Elektra Kurtis is an incredibly talented composer and violinist; her album, Bridges from the East, celebrates the composer's Greek, Mediterranean and Southern European heritage. Her compositions are deeply personal with elements referencing different music styles and origins, both reflecting the sounds of Eastern Europe and North Africa. The European influences are by 20th Century classical composers such as Bartok, Stravinsky, and Lutoslawski, with the influences of jazz and Arabic classical music being represented by the melodic and harmonic colors and ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Bruce Hornsby and the Noisemakers: Rehab Reunion

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A Bruce Hornsby album with no piano sounds sort of like a Chinese dinner without rice. Well, upon further consideration it may not be quite as crazy as it sounds. The man's career is defined by nothing if not restlessness, and he's managed to do something fresh and different almost every time out. The most surprising thing he could do would be to not surprise us somehow. Rehab Reunion shows that that danger is as remote as ever. ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Fahir Atakoglu: Live At Umbria Jazz

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It is fascinating how different cultures can merge in music. Turkish-born pianist Fahir Atakoglu's trio is a fine example of a group where influences from around the world meet in original compositions that speak the international language of music. Atakoglu brings his advanced understanding of meter and melody to his compositions and drummer Horacio “El Negro" Hernandez adds a bit of Cuban spice with his rhythms. French-Canadian bassist Alain Caron's creamy electric bass is the final ingredient ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Sun Ra & His Astro-Ihnfinity Arkestra: The Intergalactic Thing

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If you are a Sun Ra devotee, let's not use the terms “fanatic" or “zealot," you probably measure your collection in board feet instead of inches. Unlike many jazz legends of the 1950s, and 1960s, Herman Sonny Blount had the foresight to record his ensemble's rehearsals and concerts. He even established his own label El Saturn Records in 1957. Yes, nineteen-fifty-seven, when other jazz giants were bound to onerous contracts with major labels, Ra was producing what we now have ...

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Fahir Atakoglu: Istanbul Blues

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The history of jazz has been one of fusion. Its musicians and composers have continually drawn upon a huge range of different musics to create the rich and diverse tapestry that is world jazz today. Jazz is an evolving tradition of music-making. And how often, in the life stories of individual jazz musicians, do we see these same patterns operating at microcosm? When it comes to the music of Turkish-born pianist-composer Fahir Atakoglu, we might define it broadly ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Noah Preminger: Dark Was The Night, Cold Was The Ground

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Saxophonist Noah Preminger got this backwards. His latest release, Dark Was The Night, Cold Was The Ground should have preceded the 2015 recording Pivot: Live At The 55 Bar. Same quartet of trumpeter Jason Palmer, bassist Kim Cass, and drummer Ian Froman. Same theme, the Delta Blues. The reverse order observation is a historical one. Where John Coltrane would record an album of shortish compositions, then take them to the Village Vanguard to expand them to album length tracks, Preminger ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Terrence McManus & John Hebert: Saints and Sinners

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Here's an album that was recorded in 2010 and released in 2015. Hence, It's better late than never, especially since this duo production by rising star experimental guitarist Terrence McManus and all-universe jazz session bassist and leader, John Hebert tease our imaginations via these nine contrasting works. The duo's creative improvisational sparks and acute call and response mechanisms tender deft expressionism from start to finish. They pose a challenging sequence of circumstances that spawn an abundance of mind-bending gambits.


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