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ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Erik Charlston JazzBrasil: Essentially Hermeto

Read "Essentially Hermeto" reviewed by Matt Cibula

Erik Charlston is not shy about revealing his main influence. Not only did he title this album Essentially Hermeto after the Brazilian multi-instrumentalist/composer/mystic Hermeto Pascoal, he even starts the first track with the kind of rustling ambient sound that Pascoal loves so much. Unlike Pascoal himself, who might use that sound for a few minutes or ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Cris Aflalo: Quase Tudo Da

Read "Quase Tudo Da" reviewed by Matt Cibula

The elegant and intelligent singer Cris Aflalo made her debut five years ago with Só Xer êm--a tribute to folk-pop composer Xerem (who also happened to be her grandfather) that was loving without being too reverent. It was one of the best albums of any kind released in 2004--but she's been gone far too long.

So ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Caetano Veloso: Ce

Read "Ce" reviewed by Matt Cibula

Cê is not a jazz album, but it's not really a pop or samba or world music record, and despite its vocals/guitar/bass/drums format, it's not a rock album either. So why am I reviewing it here? Well, first because it's by Caetano Veloso, the reigning genius of Brazilian popular music, and therefore worthy of study. On ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Tin Hat: The Sad Machinery of Spring

Read "The Sad Machinery of Spring" reviewed by Matt Cibula

Just about everyone who's been following the band formerly known as the Tin Hat Trio has been excited about this album. We all wanted to know how Mark Orton and Carla Kihlstedt would carry on after co-founder Rob Burger flew the coop. Turned out the answer was “Expand and beef up."

Clarinet madman Ben Goldberg had ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Brad Shepik Trio: Places You Go

Read "Places You Go" reviewed by Matt Cibula

Brad Shepik is a very good guitarist, but there are a lot of other people out there who can match that description. He has assembled a nice trio here featuring Gary Versace's canny Hammond B-3 work and the nifty drumming of Tom Rainey, but there are a lot of guitar trios fighting for space in the ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Format A'3: Pirate

Read "Pirate" reviewed by Matt Cibula

I have no idea how to categorize this record, the fourth from this Swiss trio, which calls itself Format A'3. It's hard bop with free inclinations and electronic savvy, and it's also post-rock with funk tendencies, and it's also ambient and fusiony sometimes. So that's a point for the group.

Here's another point: the music is ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

J.A. Granelli and Mr. Lucky: Homing

Read "Homing" reviewed by Matt Cibula

J.A. Granelli is a bassist of great subtlety; his backing band, Mr. Lucky, is small and versatile. This album contains nine pieces that range from alt.countrified jazz (or jazzified alt.country, not quite sure there) to New Orleans-ish funky-esque strut to straight-ahead blues-ish atmospherical soft-leaning fusiony I-don't-know-what.

As you can tell, it's kinda hard to categorize. I ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Olivier Le Goas Quartet: Gravitations

Read "Gravitations" reviewed by Matt Cibula

Who the heck is Olivier Le Goas, and why do you need to know about him, like, tout de suite?

The 39-year-old drummer, who's much better known in Europe than he is here, has studied classical music, has led trios and other groups in his native France, and has even played in New York with some ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Tammen / Harth / Dahlgren / Rosen: Expedition: Live at the Knitting Factory

Read "Expedition: Live at the Knitting Factory" reviewed by Matt Cibula

This is a big fat disc of free improvisation from a 2001 live show, but don't be fooled--there is method behind the madness. Fortunately, there is also madness behind the method.

It starts out all spiky and aggro. You can tell this because the first track is called “Setting Out With Aggressive Intent," but you can ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Coleman Hawkins: At Ease with Coleman Hawkins

Read "At Ease with Coleman Hawkins" reviewed by Matt Cibula

In this crazy run-around world where we never really have time to stop and appreciate all the good things in our lives, it is pretty hard to make time for Coleman Hawkins. But that is precisely why it is so important to do so. They really never invented a saxophone player better than him, and very ...