Album Review

5

Wayne Krantz: Music Room 1985

Read "Music Room 1985" reviewed by Mike Jacobs


When it comes to lost recordings, unpublished novels or newly unearthed art of any sort, receptions tend to be somewhat mixed. This may be because, in many cases, those responsible for these works are usually dead and/or mythologized to a degree, so the expectational ante gets upped accordingly. Also involved--and perhaps more important--is the ability (or inability) to receive them in their proper context years after the fact. Which is why one of the nicer aspects of Wayne ...

1

Tim Mayer: Keeper of the Flame

Read "Keeper of the Flame" reviewed by Jack Bowers


On Keeper of the Flame, Tim Mayer, a Bostonian who now calls Mexico home, leads a sharp, swinging group of like-minded amigos on a (mostly) octet studio date enriched by Diego Rivera's colorful arrangements. Mayer plays tenor sax on half a dozen tracks, soprano sax on “Bye Bye Blackbird" and “Get Organized," alto flute on “Elusive." Mayer's tenor spans a bridge from early John Coltrane to George Coleman, Joe Henderson, Bob Mintzer and other post-bop patriarchs with a dash of ...

5

Berta Moreno Afro-Jazz Soul Project: Tumaini

Read "Tumaini" reviewed by Troy Dostert


Tenor saxophonist Berta Moreno released her promising debut, Little Steps, in 2017. It signaled her debt to forbears such as Wayne Shorter and Joe Henderson, and displayed an impressive command of bop language. Tumaini, her engaging follow-up, moves in a rather different direction. Time well-spent in Kenya gave Moreno a wider focus for her compositions, as she adroitly melds jazz, R&B and Afro-Latin idioms into an enjoyable musical synthesis. “Tumaini" is a Swahili word for “hope," and there ...

3

Roni Ben-Hur: Stories

Read "Stories" reviewed by Jerome Wilson


Guitarist Roni Ben-Hur, originally from Israel, has absorbed a lot of different cultures and styles into his music. That is reflected on this CD in the variety of music played here: straight ahead jazz as well as Latin and Middle Eastern folk melodies. Mexican singer Magos Herrera brings a sense of husky passion to the songs “La Serena" and “A Redoblar" that sits nicely beside Ben-Hur's warm guitar chords, Ingrid Jensen's soaring trumpet and George Cables' crafty piano ...

1

Nikol Bókóva: Prometheus

Read "Prometheus" reviewed by Friedrich Kunzmann


The quintet which pianist Nikol Bóková rounded up for her third album as a leader can be regarded as a showpiece of the young and dynamic talents stirring up the Czech jazz scene. Featuring the crafty skills of contemporary guitarist David Doruzka, French-horn player Radek Baborak's exceptional lyricism, and a versatile rhythm section made up of bassist Jaromir Honzak and Michal Wierzgon, Prometheus presents a highly melodious program which blends timeless lyricism with modern soundscapes to an effect that weighs ...

6

Noah Preminger: Thunda

Read "Thunda" reviewed by Mike Jurkovic


There's a fascinating, affirmative equilibrium coursing throughout Thunda that words may fall short of. It's a music of purity and wonder spoken by survivors of the oddest year. It's a broad, fearless conversation between two big thinkers and all who choose to listen in, either by accident or design. Simply stated, you'll find yourself easily lost in the tight, exquisite mazes created and crafted freely by fellow metropolitans saxophonist Noah Preminger and bassist Kim Cass. “Slaughter" is a ...

9

Julian Lage: Squint

Read "Squint" reviewed by Chris May


Before discussing guitarist Julian Lage's album, some food for thought... A credible argument could be put forward to say that the jazz piano trio reached its pinnacle of perfection with Bill Evans' Village Vanguard performances of June 1961, with the trio of bassist Scott La Faro and drummer Paul Motian, and that trios led by guitars, another chordal instrument, have long since replaced piano led trios at the evolutionary edge of the music. Still thinking aloud, as it ...


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