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

ALBUM REVIEW

Wolfgang Muthspiel: Angular Blues

Read "Angular Blues" reviewed by Mike Jurkovic

So much of Austrian guitarist Wolfgang Muthspiel's music materializes before you like Mr. Spock and company on Star Trek. The music beamed in always airy and on the verge of evaporation. But before it does either manifest or vanish it leads you along a slippery slope, through brave structures where only the guitarist knows where the footings are hidden. Long time collaborator drummer Brian Blade knows the above characteristics well. So he becomes the center of gravity around ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Wolfgang Muthspiel: Angular Blues

Read "Angular Blues" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

Austrian jazz guitarist Wolfgang Muthspiel's previous two ECM albums have been quintets: Where The River Goes (ECM, 2018) and Rising Grace (ECM, 2016). This trio date is a call back to his ECM leader debut, Driftwood (ECM, 2014), with Brian Blade returning on drums but Scott Colley replacing Larry Grenadier on double bass. The music is mostly Muthspiel originals, but this time the program also includes two standards. Muthspiel opens the set on classical guitar, which he stays ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Wolfgang Muthspiel: Angular Blues

Read "Angular Blues" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Guitarist Wolfgang Muthspiel's fourth leader date for ECM Records--and his second trio outing for that storied imprint, following Driftwood (ECM Records, 2014)--is a marvel of ingenious interplay, musical sensitivity and absolute sincerity. Joining forces with drummer Brian Blade, a longtime band mate, and bassist Scott Colley, a playing partner from the '90s, Muthspiel delves into the deepest recesses of his mind and sound, delivering a program which is as absorbing as it is refreshing. Recorded in Tokyo after ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Carla Bley: Life Goes On

Read "Life Goes On" reviewed by Mike Jurkovic

After decades of illuminating and revealing work, reveling in and breaking free of shadows, it is those same shadows that still inspire and inform Carla Bley. Which perhaps explains why the title track of Life Goes On rolls in on the 12-bar like a music obsessed, post-bop cigarette girl absorbing Count Basie at Birdland in the 1950s. So let's take a brief moment to be thankful for the odd, out of time quirks that have brought us to this same ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Oded Tzur: Here Be Dragons

Read "Here Be Dragons" reviewed by Mike Jurkovic

It's the sound of unresolved resolve. A broader scope of the human scale. That we all ask the same questions, walk down the same roads and it is that migration in, around and through our common, spacious moments and moral corners wherein we reach our conclusions, if not our destinations.That's just part of what you'll gather from Israeli born/New York biding saxophonist Oded Tzur's hugely bracing and all encompassing ECM debut. Of course the dragons are right outside ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Carla Bley / Andy Sheppard / Steve Swallow: Life Goes On

Read "Life Goes On" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Coming off a recent illness, the legendary composer-pianist Carla Bley has her sense of humor and political instincts intact on Life Goes On. The trio album with saxophonist Andy Sheppard and bassist Steve Swallow completes a trilogy which began with Trios in 2013 but the three have been recording together since 1994 with their first album Songs With Legs (WATT/ECM, 1995). In a 2019 interview with German magazine Kaput Bley spoke about the synergy that makes her trio work so ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Carla Bley: Life Goes On

Read "Life Goes On" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

Pianist / composer Carla Bley is an inspiring woman. Pianist Paul Bley was inspired to marry her, and record a full album of her compositions: Barrage (ESP-Disk, 1965), in addition to including four of her originals on Open, To Love (ECM Records, 1973). George Russell included her “Bent Eagle" on his Stratusfunk (Riverside Records, 1960). Jimmy Giuffre presented his version of her “Ictus" on his album Thesis (Verve, 1961). And if these examples date the influence of Carla Bley, consider ...


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