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Article: Album Review

Miguel Zenon: Musica De Las Americas

Read "Musica De Las Americas" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan


Alto saxophonist Miguel Zenon has made a career out of exploring his Puerto Rican roots, with albums like Alma Adentro: The Puerto Rican Songbook (Marsalis Music, 2011), Tipico (Miel Music, 2017) and Yo Soy La Tradicion (Miel Music, 2018). With Musica De Las Americas he broadens his vision to celebrate the history of the American continents, ...

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Article: Album Review

Gordon Grdina's Nomad Trio: Boiling Point

Read "Boiling Point" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan


Even if Gordon Grdina does not release another album in 2022, the year should be considered as the time when it all came together for the Vancouver-based guitarist and oud-ist. Oddly Enough: The Music Of Tim Berne, Night's Quietest Hour and Pathways, all on Attaboygirl Records, were released in the first six month of 2022--a productive ...

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Article: Album Review

Alessandro Sgobbio: Piano Music

Read "Piano Music" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan


We ask our artists to give us something of themselves. The solo piano format is a superior way to do this--the musican alone at the piano, no collaboration; and Italian composer/pianist Alessandro Sgobbio presents the essence of his being with his first solo recording, Piano Music. The music is a diary of Sgobbio's experiences ...

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Article: Album Review

Frank Kimbrough: Frank Kimbrough 2003 - 2006

Read "Frank Kimbrough 2003 - 2006" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan


Pianist Frank Kimbrough (1956 -2020) was involved in a good deal of collaboration throughout his career, with the Herbie Nichols Project and, most notably, his twenty-four year, seven CD stint in the piano chair of the Maria Schneider Orchestra, where he elevated an already high altitude music to an even loftier level. Such was Kimbrough's willingness ...

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Article: Album Review

Gordon Grdina/Mark Helias/Matthew Shipp: Pathways

Read "Pathways" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan


Gordon Grdina, guitarist and oud player, has cranked things up into high gear in terms of CD release productivity. This is a good thing. When artists regularly release albums--two to four or five or six a year, which was common during Blue Note Records' heyday in the late 1950s and early 60s--their artistry evolves more quickly. ...

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Article: Album Review

Charles Lloyd: Trios: Chapel

Read "Trios: Chapel" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan


Blue Note Records has a history of boasting strong stables of players. In the 1950s and 60s, we could look to Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers, trumpeter Lee Morgan, pianist Herbie Hancock, saxophonist Wayne Shorter--and if ever there was an incomplete list compiled, that one is it. Time rolls on. Twenty years (or thereabouts) into ...

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Article: Album Review

Alex Lakusta: Transmit Slow

Read "Transmit Slow" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan


Canadian bassist Alex Lakusta goes into a funk mode on Transmit Slow. His group, E3 by Alex Lakusta, exudes a fun vibe on the first tune, “Trick Shot," the opening salvo on a set of seven of the leader's modernistic originals. Joined by fellow Canadians Josh Smiley on keyboards and synths and drummer Keagan Eskritt, along ...

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Article: Album Review

Walt Weiskopf European Quartet: Diamonds and Other Jewels

Read "Diamonds and Other Jewels" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan


Two distinct types of jazz album have emerged in the difficult Covid pandemic times: the do-it-yourself statements, usually recorded in a home studio, often with internet sound swapping; and the pent-up energy, post-pandemic energy bursts, musicians getting together again after a year or more of minimal in-person collaboration. Diamonds And Other Jewels, from the Walt Weiskopf ...

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Article: Album Review

George Crotty Trio: Chronotope

Read "Chronotope" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan


Surf the web in search of the word “chronotope" and encounter explanations concerning “literary theory of philosophy and language to describe how time and space are represented in language..." And so on. A bit cerebral for the layman, perhaps, but Chronotope, from cellist George Crotty and his trio, seems not all that brainy. Visceral, perhaps, and ...

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Article: Album Review

Wadada Leo Smith: The Emerald Duets

Read "The Emerald Duets" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan


Wadada Leo Smith's music is often celestial, but the man himself is of this Earth—of America, in particular, the progeny of people brought to the Western Hemisphere involuntarily. People who have historically been treated as less than human, for the “sin" of having dark skin. This goes on. The true sin, the flames of racism, are ...


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