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CD/LP/Track Review

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Tin Men and the Telephone: World Domination Vol 1: Furie

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Seriously, if this is what world domination sounds like, sign me up for a lifetime subscription! Sure you can control this trio with a smartphone through the Tinmendo app, but can you really? These guys are so gloriously off the rails, so wondrously their own entity that, yeah, go find your hot spot and hope for reception, but you ain't in control. None of us are (at the moment). But when this Amsterdam-based cauldron of invention and genre-mashing ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Toronto Jazz Orchestra: 20

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The name on the album--20--says it all: the world-class Toronto Jazz Orchestra has been presenting marvelous music in eastern Canada and beyond for twenty years and has marked the special anniversary by releasing the fourth in a series of admirable recordings that began in 2001 with Toronto Jazz Orchestra. This time out, all the arrangements (and all but one composition, a revision of John Lennon and Paul McCartney's “Dear Prudence") are by the TJO's artistic director, Josh ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Frank Salis: Frank Salis

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Swiss organist Frank Salis (until recently he has called his working trio “Frank Salis H3O") plays the blues like he's been doing it since childhood--because he has. As a young prodigy (he taught himself how to play the piano at age eight) he was exposed to blues piano early on, and decided that was what he wanted to do. At age 20 he began studying jazz, finding his second musical love when exposed to the Hammond organ for the first ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Igor Willcox Quartet: Live!

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Live! is an unrelenting coup of a performance, an in-your-face and out-of your-seat statement, and one hell of a very hot disc -non-stop Euro fusion and jazz funk. Brazilian drummer Igor Willcox opens the gate and leads his indefatigable quartet of virtusosi -relentless bassist Glecio Nascimento, Jan Hammer influenced keyboardist Vini Morales, and free-blowing Clayton Sousa on sax -through a high-octane celebration of living and joyful playing. One can immediately see and hear that Willcox doesn't mince words ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Phil Haynes & Free Country: My Favorite Things(1960-1969)

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There have been several jazz projects that looked back at the popular music of the 1960's, but none have been as all-encompassing as what drummer Phil Haynes and his band Free Country do here. They touch on Baby Boomer favorites like Jimi Hendrix, The Beatles and James Brown, but their sweep of the Sixties is wide enough to also bring in Leonard Bernstein and John Coltrane. This quartet of guitar, cello, bass and drums is extremely flexible in ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Ben Geyer: The Acadian Orogeny

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Pianist Ben Geyer is currently an Assistant Professor of Music Theory and Director of Jazz Studies at the University of West Georgia. Previously he taught music theory and aural skills at Oberlin College Conservatory and has a Ph.D. in Music Theory from the University of Kentucky. Geyer's research focuses on issues of temporality (time) in jazz, and his dissertation is called “Meter, Phrase, and Form in the Compositions of Maria Schneider." Geyer's debut album The Narrative ('18) was released in ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Duende Libre: Drift

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Duende Libre is an energetic trio of Seattle musicians utilizing the American jazz tradition as a jumping off point for exploration of global musical forms. The creative vision for the band is perhaps that of pianist/composer Alex Chadsey, yet it is his two mates, drummer/percussionist Jeff Busch, and uber bassist Farko Dosumov that bring his musical vision to life. Chadsey sets the bar high for this band by including the term “duende" as part of its moniker. While ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Ark Ovrutski: Journey Moments

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In lineage with his previous releases--notably Sounds of Brasil (self produced, 2011) and Intersection (Origin, 2016))--bassist/band-leader/composer Ark Ovrutski's fourth release Journey Moments is a tightly wound, expertly realized collection of five originals and four like-minded covers that nudge Ovrutski closer to the upper ranks of today's jazz. Journey Moments creates an overall sense of time and place, how we move from one moment to the next, interpreting our lives in the quieter moments. Launching with the loose-limbed rhythms ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Kimo West: Moku Maluhia - Peaceful Island

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In addition to his regular gig as guitarist with musical parodist Weird Al Yankovic--which requires him to cover a wide variety of guitar styles--Kimo West is a Hawaiian slack-key guitar aficionado. His previous solo recording Guitar Stories (Westernmost Records, 2016) applied the finger-style playing technique with open tunings to an eclectic variety of material, accompanied by several supporting musicians. Here he stays closer to the slack-key tradition, playing solo with occasional support from shakuhachi flute and cello. Kimo's compositions are ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Erroll Garner: Night Concert

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It's the jazz equivalent of finding a Van Gogh or a Ming vase in the attic: the discovery of a complete, perfectly-recorded 1964 concert by one of the music's greatest virtuoso solo pianists. In the beginning was Art Tatum. Then came Oscar Peterson. Finally--and in many ways the most interesting of the holy trinity--Erroll Garner. Garner was famed for his long, rambling introductions. In a section of the liner notes jazz historian Professor Robin D. G. Kelley ...