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Article: Album Review

Haazz & Company: Unlawful Noise

Read "Unlawful Noise" reviewed by Micah Holmquist

The sextet responsible for Unlawful Noise stands out because four of the players (Kees Hazevoet, Peter Bennink, Peter Brotzmann, and Han Bennink) are white and hail from Europe while the remaining two (Johnny Dyani and Louis Moholo) are black musicians who were born in South Africa. The fact that this music, recorded on October 27, 1976, ...


Article: Album Review

Jemeel Moondoc Vtet: Revolt of the Negro Lawn Jockeys

Read "Revolt of the Negro Lawn Jockeys" reviewed by Micah Holmquist

Maybe I am wrong about this, but it seems to me that in recent years an increasingly large number of horn players -including the likes of Nick Bisesi, Rob Blakeslee, and Joe McPhee- have begun to make music similar to that found on the early recordings of Ornette Coleman. Given that over the past 40 or ...


Article: Album Review

William Parker & Hamid Drake: Volume 1: Piercing the Veil

Read "Volume 1: Piercing the Veil" reviewed by Micah Holmquist

For a little over a year now AUM Fidelity has been promising the eminent release of a duo recording from Hamid Drake and William Parker. Since the two have worked together and created powerful pulses with a variety of other musicians, a duo setting provided the promise of music based primarily -although, due to the expressiveness ...


Article: Album Review

Joe McPhee & Hamid Drake: Emancipation Proclamation: A Real Statement of Freedom

Read "Emancipation Proclamation: A Real Statement of Freedom" reviewed by Micah Holmquist

A couple of photos in the packaging of Emancipation Proclamation: A Real Statement of Freedom feature Joe McPhee and Hamid Drake dressed up in brightly colored shirts and appearing to be two Parrot Heads about to hear Jimmy.  However, with all due respect to the fine music of Margaritaville, Mr. Buffett has nothing McPhee and Drake. ...


Article: Album Review

Br: Shadows

Read "Shadows" reviewed by Micah Holmquist

Peter Brötzmann is an impressive figure in more ways than one. To begin with, there is his status as a legend. From his 1968 debut Machine Gun to the present day, the German saxophonist has long stood for creativity and challenging conventions. Since then he has played with many of the great avant-garde masters such as ...


Article: Album Review

Marco Eneidi, William Parker, and Donald Robinson: Cherry Box

Read "Cherry Box" reviewed by Micah Holmquist

Marco Eneidi, William Parker, and Donald Robinson recorded Cherry Box live in concert on September 20, 1998 at the Mills College Concert Hall in Oakland, California. Parker is the best known of the three musicians and most readers of this review probably don't need an introduction to the bassist's considerable work both as a leader and ...


Article: Album Review

Paul Lytton and Ken Vandermark: English Suites

Read "English Suites" reviewed by Micah Holmquist

Most readers are probably familiar with Ken Vandermark as he has made quite a stir in the last couple of years. The MacArthur Foundation awarded him one of their genius awards and his weekly performances with the Vandermark 5 at the Empty Bottle in Chicago have both earned critical accolades and exposed improvised music to an ...


Article: Album Review

Surface Music: Live at the Knitting Factory 8.30.99

Read "Live at the Knitting Factory 8.30.99" reviewed by Micah Holmquist

The four members of Surface Music met while attending the small but esteemed Oberlin College in the Ohio town of the same name. This might not be the most common of origins for jazz groups but it should not take away from the exciting music that these four still emerging talents can make. The title, Live ...


Article: Album Review

Brian Chase and David Remmick: Games are the Enemies of Truth, Beauty, and Sleep

Read "Games are the Enemies of Truth, Beauty, and Sleep" reviewed by Micah Holmquist

One of the elements that makes the music known as the “avant-garde" or “free jazz" is the frequently long length of tracks. A cut that goes on for 10 minutes is not especially long in these styles but would be an epic piece if it were country, pop, rap, rock, etc. The situation becomes even more ...


Article: Album Review

Bill Cole's Untempered Ensemble: 11/20/99

Read "11/20/99" reviewed by Micah Holmquist

11/20/99 sounds strange. The music utilizes influences from not only the jazz tradition but also from the music of Africa, the Middle East, and Oceania to tell at least part of the story of the African American experience. Bill Cole and his Untempered Ensemble never resolve this incongruity but they don’t really need to. The music ...


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