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ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Daniel Rotem: Solo

Read "Solo" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Back in early March of 2020, tenor saxophonist Daniel Rotem was gathering a broad swath of West Coast talent for his next studio album. He was organized and had plans in motion, but the world had other ideas in mind. Everything quickly shut down and Rotem, like the rest of the global music community, found himself ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Mike Jones: All By Myself

Read "All By Myself" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

While jazz is a social music through and through, solitude has always spurred creation too. And in the age of COVID-19, when safety often stands in the way of musical gatherings, solo efforts seem to be the way to go. For pianist Mike Jones, the idea of playing solo piano is far from ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

John Hollenbeck: Songs You Like A Lot

Read "Songs You Like A Lot" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Every ending a beginning, each conclusion an act of creation. If multi-hyphenate John Hollenbeck's Songs You Like A Lot doesn't slot within that sentiment, nothing really does. This collection marks the completion of a lauded trilogy that's stretched out across the better part of a decade, but it also signals the start of something new--the Flexatonic ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Jacob Garchik: Clear Line

Read "Clear Line" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

As strange as it may sound, sometimes the best way to break free is to simply box yourself in. Limitations obviously cut off certain possibilities entirely, but they open the mind to so many others in the process. Composer (and trombonist) Jacob Garchik has long subscribed to that line of thinking and he takes it to ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Adrabesa Quartet: Phoenix

Read "Phoenix" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Slovenian saxophonist Vasko Atanasovski has a gift for marrying seemingly disparate sounds, styles and cultures, as demonstrated on this compelling date. Binding virtuoso Italian accordionist Simone Zanchini, French tuba titan Michel Godard and Polish drumming force Bodek Janke, and enhancing the scenery with the presence of his son, guest cellist Ariel Vei Atanasovski, this leader erases ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Brian Charette: Like the Sun

Read "Like the Sun" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

With time on his hands, neurons firing fast and a serious hankering for tinkering, organist and keyboard whiz Brian Charette created what can best be described as an integrated groove orchestrion with catholic tastes. Using samplers, drum machines and arpeggiators programmed to react to and accompany his playing, Charette birthed a man-meets-machine outfit bent on exploring ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

The Brazilian Trio: Águas Brasileiras

Read "Águas Brasileiras" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Brazilian waters beckon with their beauty and energies, and this trio serves as a perfect vessel to carry the ears across that aqua viva. Pianist Helio Alves, bassist Nilson Matta and drummer Duduka Da Fonseca--three Brazilian heavies long based in New York—have played together in different configurations and situations for decades. And when they first banded ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Marty Elkins & Mike Richmond: 'Tis Autumn

Read "'Tis Autumn" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Vocals, bass and Golden Age jazz standards. That's all that's here and it's all that's needed. Working their way through ten classics penned between 1926 and 1947, vocalist Marty Elkins and bassist Mike Richmond get right to the heart of jazz history. Their music has an easy draw to it, but there's absolutely no drama behind ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Mike Renzi with Jim Porcella: Christmas Is: December Duets

Read "Christmas Is: December Duets" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Now here's some music to cozy up to. You can almost feel the warmth of a fire place, smell some spruce and pine, see the falling snowflakes and taste the heaven of hot chocolate in these sounds. Master pianist Mike Renzi, a septuagenarian mainstay of the vocal community whose work has supported everyone from Mel Torme ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

3D Jazz Trio: Christmas in 3D

Read "Christmas in 3D" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Still riding high on the release of I Love To See You Smile (Diva Jazz, 2020), the 3D Jazz Trio drops in again to ring in the holiday season. And while it's true that 2020 hasn't left us with much to celebrate, a chance to sit back and reflect while basking in the glow of some ...


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