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ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Alan Broadbent And NDR Bigband: America The Beautiful

Read "America The Beautiful" reviewed by Edward Blanco

Being a part of the big band sound was an experience pianist Alan Broadbent embraced, endured and eventually, wanted to step away from. Orchestra music--comprised of boisterous reeds and brass sections--were far too loud and too big drowning out the finesse sounds of the acoustic piano. When Broadbent left the Woody Herman Big Band in 1972, ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Alan Broadbent And NDR Bigband: America The Beautiful

Read "America The Beautiful" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

In the brief liner essay that accompanies America The Beautiful, pianist Alan Broadbent notes that he has “an aversion to being clever," but the rest of the music world never received that memo. Everybody from Irene Kral to Diana Krall and Charlie Haden to Charlie Rich has benefited from his brilliance with a pen and/or a ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Ayako Shirasaki: Some Other Time

Read "Some Other Time" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, but the creator also has a hell of a lot to do with it when it comes to the arts. Every musical performance leaves certain items open for debate for and from those on the receiving end, but some things remain irrefutable because of those on the ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Ayako Shirasaki: Some Other Time

Read "Some Other Time" reviewed by Jeff Winbush

There is a certain sublime pleasure in the simplicity of the trio playing piano, bass and drums. The Ayako Shirasaki trio's approach is straightforward and straight ahead jazz at it's best. Blending both traditional and original compositions, Shirasaki is a nimble and facile pianist who knows how to swing like Bud Powell, one of her musical ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Hammer Klavier Trio: Rocket In The Pocket

Read "Rocket In The Pocket" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Power piano trios willing to plug-in are not the norm in jazz, but Hamburg's Hammer Klavier Trio, thankfully, never received that message. The music that they present completely erases the dividing lines between traditional piano trios, hard hitting threesomes like The Bad Plus, and genre-blending Euro-stars like the late Esbjörn Svensson Trio. This band has all ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Ayako Shirasaki: Falling Leaves - Live In Hamburg

Read "Falling Leaves - Live In Hamburg" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Energy is one of the most important and elusive elements in jazz. Some people foolishly equate energy with speed or skill, but the two aren't necessarily linked. Bill Evans didn't sprint around the keyboard, but his music created a cocoon of energy that enveloped an audience in a way that few pianists could ever emulate. Energy ...