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ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Yao/Smith/Hughes Sextet: The Gates

Read "The Gates" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

More water from the seemingly inexhaustible Detroit hard bop well. Saxophonist James Hughes and trumpeter Jimmy Smith are known for their own Hughes Smith Quintet, as heard on Motion (Self Produced, 2018) and Ever Up & Onward (Self Produced, 2016)--two red-hot recordings in that tradition. Here they are joined by co-leader John Yao on trombone, and ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Chris Lomheim - Michael O'Brien - Jay Epstein: Triage

Read "Triage" reviewed by Friedrich Kunzmann

Triage refers to the process of weeding-out, deciding about what gets eliminated, on the one hand, and what stays, on the other. In the context of this album, its title can be interpreted as the process these three musicians have gone through during the course of over twenty years of collaborating, captured on the eleven original ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Michael Rossetto: Intermodal Blues

Read "Intermodal Blues" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

Michael Rossetto is a self-taught banjoist and guitarist, whose musical travels have taken him into global music. The focus of Intermodal Blues is the five string banjo, an instrument steeped in traditional American folk and bluegrass music. But Rosetto finds his inspirations elsewhere: in the West African kora and other instruments that were ancestors to the ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

JC Sanford's Triocracy: Pyramid Scheme

Read "Pyramid Scheme" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

Trombonist / composer JC Sanford leads an unconventional chamber trio with Andy Laster and Chris Bacas on saxophones and clarinets. As the group name implies, it is a remarkably flexible and democratic small ensemble. Sanford is the main composer, but there are also collective improvisations, guided improvisations, and a few surprising covers.

“Rip Tide" ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Michael Rossetto: Intermodal Blues

Read "Intermodal Blues" reviewed by Friedrich Kunzmann

In search of the roots and the limits of where a banjo comes from and how far the instrument can go, Minneapolis-based Michael Rossetto makes a journey from cinematic soundscapes to traditional western folklore with a jazzy spin to it.

On Intermodal Blues Michael Rossetto is joined by upright bassist Chris Bates and drummer ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Bram Weijters/Chad McCullough: Pendulum

Read "Pendulum" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

Chicago-based trumpeter Chad McCullough and Belgian pianist Bram Weijters present Pendulum, the pair's fifth recording together. Their discography includes three excellent quartet outings on Origin Records, including Urban Nightingale (2012), and a duo date, Feather (eyes&ears, 2017). Pendulum follows in Feathers' footsteps to the extent of instrumentation, with Weijters wielding an array of keyboards (Wurlitzer, Rhodes, ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Atlantis Quartet: Hello Human

Read "Hello Human" reviewed by Friedrich Kunzmann

Even though, after 12 years of existence and four critically acclaimed albums, Minnesota-based collaboration Atlantis Quartet has nothing further to prove, the formation presents itself more invigorated than ever. Hello Human showcases a versatile and energetic quartet, presenting 10 originals which span from humble post-bop exercises to punk-infused riff workouts, all the while enveloped by a ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Zacc Harris: American Reverie

Read "American Reverie" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

Minneapolis-based guitarist/composer Zacc Harris is mainly represented as a player here, interpreting a wide variety of American songs in the company of double bassist Matt Peterson and drummer Lars-Erik Larson. The selection of material does cover some obvious Americana folk selections, but there are several surprising choices (and one original tune). The word “reverie" in the ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

John Christensen: Dear Friend

Read "Dear Friend" reviewed by Mike Jurkovic

Madison Wisconsin based bassist/composer John Christensen begins his debut, Dear Friend with the namesake track, a quietly rolling, reflective impression that might at first remind one of a backing track for any number of 70's singer-songwriters. It's a pretty piece, a wonderful starting point for a very melodic, almost nostalgic listen.

The next composition, ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

John Christensen: Dear Friend

Read "Dear Friend" reviewed by Friedrich Kunzmann

Madison-based double bassist John Christensen is certainly no rookie to jazz, even though Dear Friend would appear to be his debut album. After attending the University of North Texas, Christensen chose to follow a more personalized education and set up camp in San Francisco. It is in the bay area that he committed to extensive gigging ...