Album Reviews

ALBUM REVIEWS

Satoko Fujii & Tatsuya Yoshida: Baikamo

Read "Baikamo" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Among her vast catalog of formations of every size and shape, some of Satoko Fujii's most interesting work has been in duos, especially those with percussionists. Her most recent such outing was Confluence (Libra, 2019) with Spanish drummer Ramon Lopez, surprisingly melodic, especially compared to her previous drum and piano releases. Fujii reunites with Tatsuya Yoshida on Baikamo and the results are persistently fiery. A listener familiar with Yoshida's role in the alternative rock duo Ruins (with bassist/vocalist Sasaki Hisashi) ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Jamile: If You Could See Me Now

Read "If You Could See Me Now" reviewed by Martin McFie

Jamile grew up in Cachoeira do Sul (South Falls), a small town in Brazil towards the border with Uruguay. Her supportive family had no particular interest in music. Imagine her surprise, then, at finding her twenty-something self launching this debut album at Gianni Valenti's Birdland Theater in New York City. After completing her studies in Brazil, Jamile decided to do her masters in jazz in New York. “When I came to jny: New York City in 2017," she ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Matt Ulery: Delicate Charms

Read "Delicate Charms" reviewed by Mike Jurkovic

Coming on the heels of 2019's outstanding trio outing Wonderment (Woolgathering Records) with violinist Zach Brock and drummer John Deitemyer, Delicate Charms is a four and a half star recording if ever one was. And it begins with a classical air, an almost chambered hush into which rush those last minute arrivals, each their own player in the “Coping" suite that emblematically ushers in bassist Matt Ulery's particularly distinctive work. Equal parts Charles Mingus ("Taciturn"), Paul Chambers, (his sense of ...

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Kneebody: Chapters

Read "Chapters" reviewed by Mike Jacobs

Chapters--the title of Kneebody's 2019 release--has a certain appropriateness, as it definitely marks several new ones for the band. One being that lyric- oriented songs account for nearly half of the material on the album. Technically, vocals are nothing new to Kneebody. The band included one track with vocals on their 2002 proto- Kneebody album Wendel. Its 2009 collaborative effort with Theo Bleckmann, Twelve Songs of Charles Ives (Winter and Winter, 2008) was nominated for a Grammy and indeed their ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Blue Note All Stars: Our Point Of View

Read "Our Point Of View" reviewed by Chris May

Different generations of Blue Note stars come together on this double-album to celebrate the label's legacy and to affirm its present-day relevance. Wayne Shorter and Herbie Hancock first recorded for Blue Note in the 1960s. Robert Glasper, Ambrose Akinmusire, Marcus Strickland, Lionel Loueke, Derrick Hodge and Kendrick Scott variously came on board in the 2000s and 2010s. The music hits the sweet spot as accurately as the lineup suggests it will. The first disc opens with Glasper's ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Jaimie Branch: Fly Or Die II: Bird Dogs Of Paradise

Read "Fly Or Die II: Bird Dogs Of Paradise" reviewed by Hrayr Attarian

Over a relatively short career, the adventurous composer and trumpeter Jaimie Branch has developed a mature and singular style with a politically informed dimension. On her second album as leader, she and her band create tense atmospheres that brim with creativity and spontaneity. The two part “Prayer For Amerikkka" opens with bassist Jason Ajemian's dark, reverberating thumps. These set an expectant mood that drummer Chad Taylor enhances. Branch blows longing, melancholic notes that rise and fall over the ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Martina DaSilva: A Very Chimytina Christmas

Read "A Very Chimytina Christmas" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Holiday music is its own discrete industry. Each October and November sees an uptick in releases devoted to the Christmas Season. The repertoire is well established with a core of compositions derived from the Middle Ages to the present day, including both religious and folk and popular music. While the holiday songbook is predictable, it also remains open to reinterpretation and expansion, revealing an additional stream of programming creativity. A Very Chimytina Christmas reflects the fertile nature of the seasonal ...


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