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Matt Niess

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Article: Album Review

Afro Bop Alliance Big Band: Revelation

Read "Revelation" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Revelation is the sixth recording by drummer Joe McCarthy's sixteen-year-old Afro Bop Alliance (the last three by the big band after three by smaller incarnations), the first that has come this way for review. As McCarthy's stalwart ensemble is based in the Washington, D.C. area, the supposition is that a number of topnotch armed services musicians ...

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Article: Album Review

U.S. Army Blues: Live At Blues Alley

Read "Live At Blues Alley" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky


When thinking of military bands, many tend to focus on their sterling technique and punctilious performances above all else. Creative concerns are rarely part of the conversation, but this album makes you wonder why. The U.S. Army Blues, a blue-chip big band of brothers that serves as the flagship jazz ensemble in the titular military branch, ...

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Article: Album Review

Alan Baylock Jazz Orchestra: Prime Time

Read "Prime Time" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Composer / arranger Alan Baylock seems to have a penchant for time. Prime Time is the Baylock Jazz Orchestra's third album, following Two Seconds to Midnight (2003) and Eastern Standard Time (2008). This time (no pun intended), Baylock, who doubles as chief arranger for the U.S. Air Force's premier jazz ensemble, the Airmen of Note, has ...


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