All About Jazz

Home » Articles | Reviews Only

Articles | Featured | Future

LIVE REVIEWS

Bray Jazz Festival 2018

Read "Bray Jazz Festival 2018" reviewed by

Bray Jazz Festival Various Venues jny:Bray, Ireland May 4-6, 2018 From the hilltop vantage point the Atlantic lies veiled under a blanket of thick mist. Greystones, five miles to the right, birthplace of the great Christy Doran, peeks out, seemingly floating above the misty clouds like a Roger Dean gatefold. Away to the left, across rocky fields studded with yellow heather, a giant cross marks Bray Head--a pilgrimage site for many during this ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Brad Mehldau Trio: Seymour Reads The Constitution!

Read "Seymour Reads The Constitution!" reviewed by

Pianist Brad Mehldau has an adventurous and innovative side, one that he displays on Largo (Warner Brothers, 2011) and Highway Rider (Nonesuch, 2010), albums that feature expansive and--with Largo--electronic inputs. But he always returns to the acoustic trio format that brought him to prominence. It began with a series of five Art Of The Trio albums on the Warner Brothers label released between 1997 and 2001, a project that led to a rise that hit its zenith with the near ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Festival International de Musique Actuelle de Victoriaville 2018, Part 2

Read "Festival International de Musique Actuelle de Victoriaville 2018, Part 2" reviewed by

Part 1 | Part 2 Festival International de Musique Actuelle de Victoriaville Victoriaville, Quebec May 19-20, 2018 In a span of now only seven concerts over two editions of Victo, the Eglise St Christophe d'Arthabaskahas has become a favourite among the festival venues, for the acoustic environment created by the high arch of the beautifully decorated nave. So it was the site for three of the most captivating concerts in the 34th edition of ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Andy Zimmerman: Half Light

Read "Half Light" reviewed by

Saxophonist Andy Zimmerman is not a household name. The native Chicagoan has been composing, performing, and teaching music for more than two decades. In part, he comes to the subscription-based vinyl label Newvelle by virtue of a long association with the label's co-founder Elan Mehler, himself an accomplished jazz pianist. Mehler and Zimmerman played together at New York University, toured in Europe and recorded on Mehler's debut album. Much of Zimmerman's recent work has been as a musical accompanist to ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

McClenty Hunter Jr.: The Groove Hunter

Read "The Groove Hunter" reviewed by

Drummer McClenty Hunter Jr. has left an indelible mark on the scene in the years since his move from the Washington D.C. area to the New York proving grounds. Whether taking to the studio with Jim Snidero, tearing it up on stage with icons like Curtis Fuller and Lou Donaldson, or holding down the fort during his lengthy stays in the respective bands of Kenny Garrett and Dave Stryker, Hunter has continually shown his true musical mettle and risen to ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mephiti: Mephiti

Read "Mephiti" reviewed by

Belgian alto saxophonist Erik Bogaerts leads Mephiti, a strings-heavy band with a light touch. The strings are Ruben Machtelinckx (electric guitar), Bert Cools (acoustic/electric guitar, electric guitar, and synthesizer), Indrė Jurgelevičiūtė ( Kantele or kanklės: Lithuanian plucked box zither) and Brice Soniano (double bass). Stijn Cools completes the group on drums. “Shilly" opens the album with a pensive alto-saxophone melody over a double-bass countermelody, the string section providing a rich texture of arpeggiated chords. “Hymne I" provides immediate ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Dalia Faitelson: Powered by Life

Read "Powered by Life" reviewed by

"I believe that life is stronger than death," Dalia Faitelson declares with affecting simplicity midway through Powered by Life. The weighty thoughts come out hopeful in the end ("I believe that smiling is contagious ... I believe in starting a new chapter"), though it's often bittersweet in musing about the big mystery of existence. The affair as a whole goes much the same way: there's a kaleidoscopic whirl of emotions from bleakness to love and hope here, and her expressive ...

INTERVIEWS

Matsuli Music: The Fight Against Forgetting

Read "Matsuli Music: The Fight Against Forgetting" reviewed by

Now approaching a decade of operations, Matsuli Music has placed itself at the frontline of reissuing some of South Africa's most influential, important, and yet nevertheless now difficult-to-find albums in pursuit of its stated mission: “The Fight Against Forgetting." Indeed, to that end, founder Matthew Temple has done extraordinary work, as thanks to his efforts, classic 1970s fare like Dick Khoza's Chapita, Ndikho Xaba's Ndikho Xaba and the Natives, Sathima Bea Benjamin's African Songbird, Pacific Express' Black Fire, and others ...

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Basic Beauty: Arthur Blythe on Columbia

Read "Basic Beauty: Arthur Blythe on Columbia" reviewed by

Back in 2016, BGO Records started reissuing the complete works of alto saxophonist Arthur Blythe (1940-2017) on Columbia. The first volume containing Lenox Avenue Breakdown (1979), In the Tradition (1980), Illusions and Blythe Spirit (1981) has already been reviewed on AAJ. The following two volumes complete the project of putting an important body of work from one of the great, unsung saxophonists in jazz history back into circulation. Arthur Blythe Elaborations/Light Blue: Arthur Blythe Plays Thelonious ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Brad Mehldau Trio: Seymour Reads The Constitution!

Read "Seymour Reads The Constitution!" reviewed by

The track listing of Seymour Reads The Constitution! is ultimately as deceptive as the album's title (not to mention its cryptic cover image). The ten cuts feature only three compositions written by Brad Mehldau, yet these pieces constitute almost half the record's sixty-plus minutes playing time. As a result, the covers provide exceptional pacing because the pianist and his band explore that material just as deftly, only slightly less intently. And markedly less intensely than, for example, the ...