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ALBUM REVIEWS

Rova Orkestrova: No Favorites!

Read "No Favorites!" reviewed by Troy Collins

Ever since its formation in 1977, Rova, the pioneering West Coast saxophone quartet, has been augmenting its ranks to explore structured improvisation. No Favorites! pays homage to Lawrence D. “Butch" Morris, the inventor of Conduction, a revolutionary system for organizing large-ensemble improvisation using coded gestures. This ambitious album epitomizes a working relationship that Rova began with Morris in 1988, while also reflecting parallel working methods reaching back to the mid-1970s. Building on previous efforts in this milieu, the saxophone quartet ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Marty Ehrlich: A Trumpet In The Morning

Read "Marty Ehrlich: A Trumpet In The Morning" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

A Trumpet In The Morning is a first for multi-reedist Marty Ehrlich; it's the first album completely dedicated to his large group works and the first album under his name that's basically directed by his hand rather than his horn(s). The intrepid Ehrlich, who fell under the sway of St. Louis' Black Artists Group (BAG) in his formative years and fell in with the AACM crowd when he arrived in New York in the late '70s, has been putting out ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Kyle Bruckmann: On Procedural Grounds

Read "On Procedural Grounds" reviewed by Troy Collins

One of the most common methodologies embraced by the current generation of creative improvising musicians is polystylism--a seamlessly ingrained aesthetic sensibility that transcends the stylized post-modern dilettantism of earlier generations. Bay Area-based oboist Kyle Bruckmann has demonstrated the depth and breadth of this all-inclusive approach in myriad ways, from his art-damaged punk band Lozenge and genre-defying chamber group Wrack to electro-acoustic solo recitals. Accompanied by a handful of colleagues from San Francisco, as well as former associates from his Chicago ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Scott Fields Ensemble: Samuel

Read "Samuel" reviewed by Troy Collins

The works of Samuel Beckett have been a recurrent source of inspiration for guitarist Scott Fields. Samuel is Fields' second effort at conveying the master's prose through pure sound, following Beckett (Clean Feed, 2007). Transposing the original text of Beckett's plays into precise pitches, chords and time signatures, Fields transforms Beckett's wordplay into melodies and harmonies that share more than a passing resemblance to jazz. Despite their cerebral origins and abstruse character, the ensuing works are in fact fairly accessible.

ALBUM REVIEWS

Tony Malaby: Paloma Recio

Read "Paloma Recio" reviewed by Mark Corroto

To use a rock 'n' roll analogy, saxophonist Tony Malaby is the Mick Jagger to Joe Lovano's Paul McCartney. It's not that anyone has to choose sides, but if the classic Paul Motian band (featuring Lovano) was The Beatles, then Malaby's Paloma Recio quartet is the Rolling Stones.

Without having to choose sides, Paloma Recio--or “Loud Dove"--has recorded an instant masterpiece of modern music on this self-titled disc.

Malaby, a regular in New York's jazz circles, ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Tony Malaby: Paloma Recio

Read "Paloma Recio" reviewed by Troy Collins

One of New York City's most in-demand tenor saxophonists, Tony Malaby has become one of the most distinctive artists of his time. A first generation Mexican-American born in Tucson, Arizona, Paloma Recio finds Malaby delving deeper into his own personal history, abstracting Spanish-tinged melodies with the support of some of the best improvisers working today.

Focusing on Malaby's penchant for unbound lyricism, Paloma Recio (Loud Dove) is the self-titled debut of Malaby's quartet of the same name. Inspired ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Anthony Coleman: Lapidation

Read "Lapidation" reviewed by Kurt Gottschalk

After a recording career given over in large part to shtick and nostalgia, the last few years have seen a well-deserved spike for Anthony Coleman. His last two records for Tzadik showed him (on 2006's Pushy Blueness) as a strong composer and (also 2006, Shmutisige Magnaen: Coleman Plays Geburtig) a remarkable interpreter. Lapidation continues the documentation of the pianist as a strong composer. The five pieces included were written over the span of the last decade, ranging ...


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