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Honey Ear Trio: Steampunk Serenade

Read "Steampunk Serenade" reviewed by Troy Collins

Building on an established legacy, Honey Ear Trio updates the time honored acoustic instrumentation of the classic saxophone trio with a subtle use of electronics on their debut Steampunk Serenade. Saxophonist Erik Lawrence, bassist Rene Hart and drummer Allison Miller draw upon their diverse experiences in an array of popular music forms (rock, soul, folk) to inform an accessible yet adventurous series of modern jazz variations. Challenging the conventions of structure and form, they treat time signatures, tempos ...

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Allison Miller: Boom Tic Boom

Read "Boom Tic Boom" reviewed by Mark Corroto

Just say yes to records led by drummers. Why? Because drummers may rarely be the leaders or composers, but they're always the soul of any good recording. Where's Coltrane without Jones, or Jarrett without DeJohnette? Nowhere. That's why, when a session is commanded by a percussionist, as is Boom Tic Boom by drummer Allison Miller, there is reason to revel.

Miller has held the drum chair for jazz artists such as Marty Ehrlich, Steven Bernstein, George Garzone, Rachel Z, to ...

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Allison Miller: Boom Tic Boom

Read "Boom Tic Boom" reviewed by Lyn Horton

Opening with a set of cymbal crashes amid a tight-knit kit rumble that segues into the rhythmic pulse, drummer Allison Miller begins her second album with “Cheyenne," one of four original compositions written for this group. Joining Miller in her trio are Myra Melford (piano) and Todd Sickafoose (bass). Violinist Jenny Scheinman does a sprightly guest spot for Miller's “CFS (Candy Flavored Sidewalks)." The leader's music is infectious. Its multiple chorus structure brings with it an orientation ...

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Victor Prieto: Persistencia

Read "Persistencia" reviewed by Marcia Hillman

On Victor Prieto's debut recording, the accomplished Spanish accordionist has chosen to approach his instrument in a new way. Aided by bassist Carlo DeRosa and drummer Allison Miller, Prieto included Egberto Gismonti's “Frevo, John Coltrane's “26-2 and Astor Piazzolla's “Libertango in a program with six original compositions. Starting with “Frevo, Prieto immediately dazzles with his fast fingering, switching from single notes to chords in rapid fashion. The group is equally at home playing the up-tempo material (like ...

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Victor Prieto: Persistencia

Read "Persistencia" reviewed by Tom Greenland

Originally from Orense, Spain, accordionist Victor Prieto brings old-world charm and a new-fangled approach to jazz. Prieto's debut CD release, Persistencia, featuring Carlo DeRosa on acoustic bass and Allison Miller on trap drums, showcases the leader's unique approach to harmony, melody, and tone, effectively translating the accordionist's unique jazz sensibility via an unusual instrumental vehicle.

The accordion's distinctive timbre often conjures up associations with Polish polka, German folk lieder, Viennese waltzes, French musette & cabaret chansons, North American Tex-Mex, Louisiana ...

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Victor Prieto: Persistencia

Read "Persistencia" reviewed by William Grim

Spanish-born jazz accordionist Victor Prieto is the most exciting such player to come on the scene since Eddie Monteiro. Melding Argentine and Brazilian influences with a bop sensibility, Prieto gives the lie to all of the nasty things that have been said over the years about the much-maligned squeezebox.

Backed by Rachel Z drummer Allison Miller and the extraordinarily gifted bassist Carlo DeRosa, Prieto presents a varied and virtuosic set of performances on Persistencia. The variety of tunes ...

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Victor Prieto: Persistencia

Read "Persistencia" reviewed by Budd Kopman

Trios are sensitive things. They take a jump in the complexity from duos, yet can't be split into rhythm and lead instruments like quartets. To create a cohesive sound, all the members of the trio must be listening carefully to the overall balance. Each can essentially be a soloist at a different level. The trio that accordionist Victor Prieto leads on Persistencia is very finely tuned and highly responsive. Prieto plays accordion the way Toots Thielmans plays ...

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Victor Prieto: Persistencia

Read "Persistencia" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

The accordion seems to be gaining favor in the jazz world--just think of Gary Versace's beautiful playing on the title cut of Maria Schneider's masterpiece, Concert in the Garden, in an orchestral setting. Victor Prieto goes with a pared-down approach on Persistencia, placing the squeezebox out in front of bass (Carlo DeRosa) and drums (Allison Miller).Originally from Galicia, Spain, the New York-based Prieto offers up his own personal vision of accordion playing with Persistencia. It's a sweet sound, ...

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Victor Prieto: Persistencia

Read "Persistencia" reviewed by Mark F. Turner

There is a strange beauty in the accordion, a most unusual musical instrument. From polka to tango, the accordion has a sound that is instantly recognizable. It has surfaced more in popular music and jazz-influenced recordings, like Richard Galliano's Ruby, My Dear (Dreyfus, 2005). Victor Prieto now makes a most compelling case for the accordion as a primary jazz instrument on Persistencia. Born in Spain and now living in New York, Prieto, who has extensive academic studies ...

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Victor Prieto: Persistencia

Read "Persistencia" reviewed by Michael P. Gladstone

The resurgence of the accordion during the past decade, in jazz in particular, seems almost to rival the instrument's popularity during the 1950s, with mainstream artists like Art Van Damme and Angelo Di Pippo actually selling records. In the post-Millennium era, that torch is being kept alive by France's Richard Galliano, who has shown his affinity for bebop and the occasional tango in a jazz setting on his many Dreyfus Jazz albums--and, of course, the influential tango work of Astor ...

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Agrazing Maze: At The End Of The Day

Read "At The End Of The Day" reviewed by Elliott Simon

At the End of the Day is a refreshing modern jazz statement with strong original compositions from its nucleus of bassist Carlo DeRosa, pianist Enrique Haneine, and drummer Allison Miller. Contrasting grooves are united by the musicians' sparkling percussive twists and turns.The title piece is a Haneine composition that, with its relaxing piano-led tempo, would be a most welcome respite for one's cerebral regrouping after a long day. A second wind, however, is provided by DeRosa's invigorating bass ...

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Agrazing Maze: At The End Of The Day

Read "At The End Of The Day" reviewed by Budd Kopman

At The End Of The Day is a very fine effort by a core trio of piano, bass, and drums, augmented by trumpet on some tracks. What is immediately clear is that the trio is very tight and has developed a high degree of communication. Technically, pianist Enrique Haneine and drummer Allison Miller are first-rate, to say the least. I would include Carlo DeRosa also, but he is recorded a bit back in the mix and hence his contributions are ...