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ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Mat Maneri Quartet: Dust

Read "Dust" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

The respective artists are firmly rooted in the modern vanguard of experimentation, improvisation and countless offshoots of the jazz vernacular. However, A-list bassist John Hebert is also a veteran of many modern/progressive jazz sessions but, as evidenced here, is also comfortable exploring the outside realm. Hence, the musicians dish out a rather somber and stoic chamber-jazz ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Remy Le Boeuf: Assembly Of Shadows

Read "Assembly Of Shadows" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

With his second date as a leader, multi-woodwind artist Remy Le Bouef performs these largely self-penned comps with an orchestra, featuring notable musicians Anna Webber (woodwinds), Alex Goodman (guitar) and other jazz VIPs. Here, the leader's composing acuity brims with multicolored hues and harmonious arrangements, largely executed with a composite of modern jazz and classical inferences ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Henrik Olsson: Hand of Benediction

Read "Hand of Benediction" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

This is the trio's debut recording led by cagey and inventive Swedish guitarist Henrik Olsson for a set that resides in an opaque realm, containing dabs of free jazz, punk jazz and avant-garde rock. The agile and limber trio ventures through some enigmatic musical territory via tight unison phrasings, multipart progressions, animated and linear uprisings along ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Vinz Vonlanthen: No Man's Land

Read "No Man's Land" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

Swiss improvising guitarist Vinz Vonlanthen constructs his second solo guitar album since Oeil (Leo, 2004) amid his more recent collaborative recordings for Leo Records, largely featuring like-minded French artists. Otherwise, it's an apt album title via the guitarist's resonating electric avant-garde workouts, speckled with his wordless voice overlays on several tracks. Essentially, he conveys despair and ...

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Scott Henderson: People Mover

Read "People Mover" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

Scott Henderson looms as one of the reigning guitar heroes since the mid-1980s, beginning with the powerhouse jazz fusion band Tribal Tech—an outfit that helped bring this genre back to life after it waned in the late 1970s and early 1980s. And other than his lengthy and impressive solo career, he's performed with the Zawinul Syndicate, ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Mark Wingfield & Gary Husband: Tor & Vale

Read "Tor & Vale" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

Before receiving widespread exposure as the keyboardist with John McLaughlin's The 4th Dimension band, Gary Husband's notoriety was firmly centered on his polyrhythmic progressive rock and jazz drumming, rising through the ranks by accompanying prodigious guitarists Allan Holdsworth and Robin Trower, amid stints with Level 42, UK and other notables. Moreover, idiosyncratic guitarist Mark Wingfield's notoriety ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Stratus Luna: Stratus Luna

Read "Stratus Luna" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

These hip young Brazilian cats impart an encyclopedic comprehension of core progressive rock fundamentals, executed with a modern uplift. Hence, there are many tasty treats on this album. Yet the band doesn't predominately focus on extended solos, and concentrates more on compositional acumen, where solos become meaningful amid aural portraitures that adhere to, or in some ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Caravela Escarlate: Caravela Escarlate

Read "Caravela Escarlate" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

Caravela Escarlate is a rather stunning effort by this Brazilian trio that pays homage to the progressive rock genre's storied past, coupled with a modern sound and distinct modus operandi. Simply stated, this album is a refreshing and highly melodic program that is quite focused and congenial. The artists' cleverness sparkles on motifs where robust church ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Le Rex: Escape of the Fire Ants

Read "Escape of the Fire Ants" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

This young charismatic Swiss ensemble surges forward by melding modern sounds with New Orleans-based traditional jazz and hip groove-building pulses and perpetual motion, executed with manifold time signatures and soaring unison choruses. On its fourth album and second for Cuneiform Records, the musicians' sense of purpose transfers into your listening space as you can detect lots ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Zhenya Strigalev and Federico Dannemann: The Change

Read "The Change" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

The leaders of this date met 14-years ago at the Royal Academy Music and have become important contributors to London's jazz scene. The album title parallels life's changes, namely saxophonist Zhenya Strigalev's move back to Russia and guitarist Federico Danneman's return to performing after devoting much of his time to teaching in Santiago, Chile. As first-call ...