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Festival International de Musique Actuelle de Victoriaville 2018

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Festival International de Musique Actuelle de Victoriaville Victoriaville, Quebec, Canada May 17-18, 2018 Keeping a middle-aged festival such as the Festival International de Musique Actualle de Victoriaville fresh and relevant is a challenge, but the program for this year's 34th edition of FIMAV assembled by artistic director Michel Levasseur had something more of an avant-garde and international flavor than we have seen in recent years. Prominent in the schedule are Asian musicians and Asian-influenced music as ...

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Vijay Iyer Sextet at The Village Vanguard

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Vijay Iyer Sextet Village Vanguard New York, NY May 17, 2018 I'll recreate this blistering first set the best I can. The sextet nudged their way through the Vanguard's current crowd and its deep history. The applause built. Vijay Iyer took his place at the piano, turned to the crowd, spilled water on some mic and electric cables and hoped it doesn't cause a problem. He introduced his band, obviously straining-at-the-bit: Graham Haynes trumpet, ...

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Spencer Day at The Green Room 42

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Spencer Day The Green Room 42 New York, NY May 18, 2018 In celebration of his seventh album, Angel City, singer/songwriter Spencer Day charmed the socks off a gracious audience at The Green Room 42. Day's greatness in both capacities lies in his ability to embody every song as if he were living it in real time. And while this comes across beautifully enough in the studio, in person one can feel those ...

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Adam Rudolph's Galaxies at The Stone

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Adam Rudolph's Galaxies The Stone New York, NY May 10, 2018 On May 10, 2018, as part of a week-long residency at The Stone, percussionist and cosmic traveler Adam Rudolph convened an assembly of stardust worthy of the name Galaxies. Backed by a flowing red curtain and facing a sold-out audience, he welcomed bassist Bill Laswell, guitarist Nels Cline, drummer Hamid Drake, reedman Ralph M. Jones, and electronics guru James Dellatacoma for an ...

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Nik Bartsch's Ronin at Constellation in Chicago

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Nik Bärtsch's Ronin Constellation Chicago, IL May 10, 2018 On May 10th 2018, Swiss pianist Nik Bärtsch brought his quartet, Ronin to Chicago's Constellation. In the venue's intimate studio B the ensemble stretched out on material from its latest album to date, the sublime Awase (ECM, 2018). It kept the close to 200-member audience captivated with their collective performance. Bärtsch opened the concert with tolling notes from the piano strings. Multireed player Sha ...

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Denny Zeitlin, Buster Williams & Matt Wilson at Mezzrow Jazz Club

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Denny Zeitlin, Buster Williams, Matt Wilson Mezzrow Jazz Club New York, NY May 5, 2018 It was cramped on Cinco de Mayo in Mezzrow. Real cramped. Just as it should be for the last night of Denny Zeitlin's rare, four night residency. A West Coast resident, Zeitlin doesn't get out this way much, so when he does, the people respond, listen, and marvel. Denny Zeitlin may not be a name that rolls off ...

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Duski at the Bronx Bar

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Duski The Bronx Bar and Restaurant Teignmouth, Devon May 2, 2018 “Do you want happy or loud?" Aidan Thorne asked the audience calling for an encore. In the event the extra piece was both, as indeed were most of the numbers Duski played this night. The band hails from Wales, and their first number was “Flat Holm," referring to one of two islands in the Bristol Channel--Steep Holm is English, Flat Holm is ...

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Radio Underground at The Last Stop Sports Bar

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Radio Underground The Last Stop Sports Bar Winooski, Vermont May 6, 2018 It's a special pleasure to catch a band on the rise, and even more so at the threshold of a breakthrough. Chicago at Tanglewood in 1970 come to mind as does the Who at Fillmore East in 1968. And then there's Neil Young and Crazy Horse on their run of California theaters in the spring of 2018. Vermont's own Radio ...

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Nik Bärtsch's Ronin at (Le) Poisson Rouge

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Nik Bärtsch's Ronin (Le) Poisson Rouge New York, NY May 6, 2018 On May 6, 2018, Swiss pianist and composer Nik Bärtsch brought his refashioned Ronin outfit to New York City. The band's name comes from the word meaning “masterless samurai," and indeed listeners can't help but feel that Bärtsch and his melodic warriors have gone rogue for so long that their footprints are practically indistinguishable. At the way station known as (Le) ...

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Lello Molinari Quartet at Regatta Bar

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Lello Molinari Quartet Regatta BarCambridge, Massachusetts May 1, 2018 During the creation of Lello Molinari's current release Lello's Italian Job, Vol. 2(March, 2018) the renown jazz bassist was intentionally stepping back to his roots of southern Italy, specifically Naples--which he left in 1986 to study at the Berklee College of Music, in Boston. In Lello's own words he empathized, “If you think about Italian music, it's like saying 'Jazz'--there's so much and it's so ...