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ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Tony Allen: The Source

Read "The Source" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

Drummer and Afrobeat pioneer Tony Allen returns to his jazz roots for his first full-length Blue Note album, following the EP A Tribute to Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers. The Art Blakey arrangements married hard bop with an Afrobeat rhythmic sensibility: here the same approach is taken with original material (most of it composed and ...

Mathias Eick: Midwest

Read "Mathias Eick: Midwest" reviewed by John Kelman

Having first emerged on ECM Records, garnering significant attention for his work with fellow Norwegian, guitarist Jacob Young (2004's Evening Falls), and Finish pianist/harpist Iro Haarla (2006's Northbound), it seemed only a matter of time before trumpeter Mathias Eick would get the opportunity to start releasing albums of his own for the label. But if the ...

ARTICLE: REDISCOVERY

Masqualero: Masqualero

Read "Masqualero: Masqualero" reviewed by John Kelman

Masqualero
Masqualero
Odin
1983

Despite plenty of evidence to the contrary, there are still those who think that Norwegian musicians can't play “real jazz" (whatever that is), and that what they do play is something consistently (and erroneously) categorized as “Nordic Cool." Submitted for your approval is today's Rediscovery: the self-titled debut from Masqualero, ...

ARTICLE: EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Arve Henriksen: The Nature of Connections

Read "Arve Henriksen: The Nature of Connections" reviewed by John Kelman

Few artists could call an album The Nature of Connections with as much veracity as Norwegian trumpeter Arve Henriksen. There's been the myriad of collaborations on his own albums--just a small handful of the contributors to recordings including Places of Worship (Rune Grammofon, 2013), Cartography (ECM, 2008), Strjon (Rune Grammofon, 2007) and Chiaroscuro (Rune Grammofon, 2004) ...

ARTICLE: EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Dr. Kay & His Interstellar Tone Scientists: The Search for True Happiness

Read "Dr. Kay & His Interstellar Tone Scientists: The Search for True Happiness" reviewed by Eyal Hareuveni

Who could guess that about twenty years after the spirit of Sun Ra left this planet and went to higher spheres what will transpire in the chilly winds of Oslo, Norway. But anyone who followed even remotely the unbelievable life of Sun Ra already knows that stranger things have happened.

The young ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEWS

2013 TD Ottawa Jazz Festival: Ottawa, Canada, June 21-26, 2013

Read "2013 TD Ottawa Jazz Festival: Ottawa, Canada, June 21-26, 2013" reviewed by John Kelman

TD Ottawa Jazz Festival
Ottawa, Canada
June 20-July 1, 2013
Having made the decision, in 2012, to broaden its stylistic purview to include not only music on the periphery of jazz, but artists with no real connection to the founding raison d'être of the festival, the 2013 TD Ottawa Jazz Festival continued to bring extracurricular music ...

Eyes of a Blue Dog: Rise

Read "Rise" reviewed by John Kelman

As disproportionate as the amount of fine music being made in Norway is to its relatively small population of five million, so, too, is its surprisingly large cadre of outstanding drummers. A quick scan through the list of drummers who have made some kind of name for themselves, both at home and abroad, include--amongst many, many ...

Ape Club: Ape Club

Read "Ape Club" reviewed by Eyal Hareuveni

Ape Club is a new Norwegian quartet that has been operating since 2009 and plays jazz at the crossroads of be-bop and early free jazz of the late fifties and early sixties. Its debut album blends inspirations of such great composers as Thelonious Monk, Ornette Coleman and Charles Mingus, spiced with modern pop song structures, folksy ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEWS

Vossa Jazz XL: Voss, Norway, March 22-24, 2013

Read "Vossa Jazz XL: Voss, Norway, March 22-24, 2013" reviewed by John Kelman

Vossa Jazz
Oslo, Norway
March 22-24, 2013
Every festival hopes to have a signature, that certain something that differentiates it from all the rest and makes it a desired destination, but few have as many things going for it as the annual Vossa Jazz Festival, now in its 40th year.

It certainly may seem ...

Mats Eilertsen: SkyDive

Read "Mats Eilertsen: SkyDive" reviewed by John Kelman

Mats Eilertsen
SkyDive
Hubro Music
2011

It's significant that, in the personnel listing to SkyDive, Mats Eilertsen lists himself last, despite having composed all its nine tracks, put the group together and produced the recording. It's a simple truth about a humble Norwegian bassist who has, in the past decade ...