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ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Polar Bear: Same As You

Read "Same As You" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Geography is rarely something that a writer considers when preparing a review. But Same as You sounds profoundly shaped by where it was mixed and mastered--in the Mojave Desert, by producer Ken Barrientos and Polar Bear drummer and bandleader Sebastian Rochford. “We spent a couple days at his studio then headed out to the desert for ...

Music’s Where You Find It

Read "Music’s Where You Find It" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki


Ajoyo
Ajoyo
Ropeadope
2014

Multi-reed player Yacine Boulares has picked up, and left behind, musical footprints literally all around the world. He was born in North Africa (Tunisia) but grew up in Paris, where he studied philosophy at the Sorbonne and jazz performance at the National Conservatory and New School ...

Polar Bear: Same As You

Read "Same As You" reviewed by Bruce Lindsay

Polar Bear's seventh album, Same As You appears barely 12 months after album number six, In Each And Every One (Leaf Label, 2014). It's far from being a “more of the same" follow-up though--this is a softer, more-at-peace Polar Bear sound than its predecessor, a mellower vibe.

There are just six tracks on the ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEWS

Live From Birmingham: Orquesta Buena Vista Social Club, Mark Holub, George Clinton & Polar Bear

Read "Live From Birmingham: Orquesta Buena Vista Social Club, Mark Holub, George Clinton & Polar Bear" reviewed by Martin Longley

Orquesta Buena Vista Social Club
Symphony Hall
April 13, 2015

Rarely does a gig prompt such an ambivalent response as this 'adiós' show by the very veteran Buena Vista posse. Musical vibrations were typically very positive within their extensive set-list of Cuban songs, covering all moods, from up-tempo near-salsa ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEWS

Enjoy Jazz Festival 2014

Read "Enjoy Jazz Festival 2014" reviewed by Adriana Carcu

Enjoy Jazz Festival
Heidelberg, Mannheim, Ludwigshafen, Germany
October 2 -November 15, 2014

Here are the festival numbers: 80 shows in almost seven weeks on 25 stages, performed by 250 musicians from 35 countries. Beyond the numbers there are many names: quite a few well known, a fair amount of established artists ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Blue-Eyed Hawk: Under The Moon

Read "Under The Moon" reviewed by Ian Patterson

London-based quartet Blue-Eyed Hawk's debut recording has benefited from three years of gigging and the slow stewing of ideas. Collectively, singer Lauren Kinsella, trumpeter Laura Jurd, guitarist Alex Roth and drummer Corrie Dick sounds like the finished article, which whets the appetite for future chapters. With writing duties spread evenly, the quartet soars over wide stylistic ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Blue-Eyed Hawk: Under The Moon

Read "Under The Moon" reviewed by Bruce Lindsay

Blue-Eyed Hawk is an exciting new band from the UK, debuting its original songs on Under The Moon. The album title is taken from the poem by W B Yeats: the band's name also comes from that poem. Such choices suggest a literate quartet, a suggestion supported by the intelligent, thoughtful, lyrics and music to be ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEWS

Live From Old York: Mark Lockheart, King Courgette, La Mer Trio & YO1 Festival

Read "Live From Old York: Mark Lockheart, King Courgette, La Mer Trio & YO1 Festival" reviewed by Martin Longley

Mark Lockheart's Ellington In Anticipation
The National Centre For Early Music
April 25, 2014

The music of Duke Ellington might represent an oft-traversed path across the jazz firmament, but the English saxophonist and composer Mark Lockheart can justify such persistent attentions. During the last decade, this tenor man has ...

Polar Bear: In Each And Every One

Read "In Each And Every One" reviewed by Bruce Lindsay

Polar Bear is back. Not just with a bang, but with a whole array of other sounds, including the occasional whimper. In Each And Every One brings together 11 tunes from the pen of drummer Sebastian Rochford--from the gently bucolic to the downright macabre. There's also an early front runner for the Best Song Title Of ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Mark Lockheart: Ellington in Anticipation

Read "Ellington  in Anticipation" reviewed by John Kelman

Ellington in Anticipation isn't Mark Lockheart's first album to employ an expanded lineup; the Polar Bear/Blue Touch Paper saxophonist collaborated with Germany's WDR Big Band on 2010's Days Like These (Fuzzy Moon) and first cut his teeth in Loose Tubes, the now-legendary large UK collective of then-up-and-comers that included pianist Django Bates, saxophonist Iain Ballamy and ...