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ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Tom Barton: Wherever I Will Be

Read "Wherever I Will Be" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Australian vocalist Tom Barton's “Wherever I Will Be," released as a standalone single in September of 2020, is, at its core, a meditation on life and loss. Extremely personal, revealing lyrics that recall “a beautiful and devastating conversation" that the singer had with his mother before her passing, it's a slow and somewhat intense offering that ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Claire Daly: Rah! Rah!

Read "Rah! Rah!" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Ask a casual fan about Rahsaan Roland Kirk's impact and you're likely to receive a remark about multi-horn madness—a man wielding three at once, brazenly blowing the walls down. But Kirk, of course, was so much more than that enduring image. His writing, performing, spirit and humanity spoke to the ages, reaching out and grabbing ahold ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Simon Moullier: Spirit Song

Read "Spirit Song" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Simon Moullier conjures elemental tides on this remarkably fluid and ear-catching debut. The French vibraphonist--a Berklee College of Music and Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz alumnus, now living in Brooklyn--offers a glowing attack, sweeping suggestions, worldly modernism and otherworldly light in these pieces recorded over the span of several sessions between 2017 and 2020.

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Alfredo Balcacer: 9 Paredes

Read "9 Paredes" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

If there's anything that can bind the artistic community in 2020, it's an understanding of isolation's impact. For guitarist Alfredo Balcacer, who was quarantining in his home city of Santo Domingo when COVID-19 closed everybody in, a sense of disorder and frustration, leavened by solace and acceptance, quickly became the norm. But rather than sit by ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Chien Chien Lu: The Path

Read "The Path" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

For vibraphonist Chien Chien Lu, the path to jazz wasn't direct. She rode a contemporary classical percussion track into her twenties in her native Taiwan, but, as it turned out, that drive was less about reaching a destination than it was about the act of discovery: A growing desire for musical freedom and adventure eventually set ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Kenny Washington: What's The Hurry

Read "What's The Hurry" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Despite what many may think, there's no prescribed timeline for firsts and career milestones. Some artists decide to initially take the reins to record when they're 18. Others only get around to doing it when they're 80. The bottom line: The right time is the right time, and nobody should worry about getting there before they're ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEW

Maria Schneider: On Worlds Diverged

Read "Maria Schneider: On Worlds Diverged" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

We stand today at an intersection between two realities. On one side there's digital darkness--an underbelly of networked netherworlds, profiteers building fortunes on the collective back of musicians, sinister forces posing as corporate protagonists--and on the other, pure light given over through nature's gifts, a kindness and humanity that grace daily existence, and the beauty and ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

John Fedchock NY Sextet: Into The Shadows

Read "Into The Shadows" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Trombonist John Fedchock's fluid slide work, celebrated composing chops and arranger's ingenuity have been put to good use in settings both large and very small in recent years, with a big band set and two live quartet records dropping between 2015 and the present. But rather than choose one of those ensemble formats over the other ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Denny Zeitlin: Live at Mezzrow

Read "Live at Mezzrow" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Coming up on two decades of creative engagement and evolution, pianist Denny Zeitlin's group with bassist Buster Williams and drummer Matt Wilson remains one of the most bracing, sophisticated and creatively satisfying trios on the scene. In the best of times, a set like this, recorded live at Spike Wilner's New York piano room Mezzrow, can ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Francesco Cataldo: Giulia

Read "Giulia" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

There's pure, undiluted beauty emanating from the jewel of an introduction on Francesco Cataldo's Giulia. The Italian guitarist's patient and pristine lines set the scene for “I Tuoi Colori (Prologo)," and his equally graceful band mates—pianist Marc Copland, bassist Pietro Leveratto and drummer Adam Nussbaum—join him, slowly drifting out toward cool blue waters like those spied ...


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