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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Cuong Vu: Ballet: The Music Of Michael Gibbs

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Having recently immersed myself in Miles Davis' In a Silent Way (Columbia, 1969) and Bitches Brew (Columbia, 1969), the journey to the music on trumpeter Cuong Vu's Ballet (The Music of Michael Gibbs) is a necessarily short one. Davis had been working up to his “Freedom Principle" throughout his recordings with is second great quintet, featuring Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Ron Carter, and Tony Williams. He achieved with his recordings closing out the 1960s, a compromise between the noises of ...

LIVE REVIEWS

The Seth Yacovone Blues Trio At Red Square

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The Seth Yacovone Blues Trio Red Square Burlington, VT July 16, 2017 On this warm, breezy summer evening outside Burlington Vermont's Red Square, The Seth Yacovone Blues Trio's first of three sets was sufficiently moving and diverse to satisfy like a concert complete unto itself. Yet the threesome's performance manifest passion and solidarity most directly through the inclusion of two numbers lying outside the strict definition of the blues. Seth Yacovone simultaneously ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Angelica Sanchez: Float The Edge

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Pianist Angelica Sanchez has become an in demand side person since her move to NYC from Arizona in 1995, performing with Wadada Leo Smith, Tony Malaby, Kevin Norton, Harris Eisenstadt, and Susie Ibarra, among many others. But her own leadership discography remains slighter than might be expected. Surprisingly Float The Edge represents her first entry as part of a traditional piano trio. As if to make amends, Sanchez has recruited strong players in bassist Michael Formanek and drummer Tyshawn Sorey, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Isamu McGregor: Resonance

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It has been five years since the release of pianist Isamu McGregor's debut Live at the Baked Potato! (Amorphous Paraphernalia Records, 2012) and his Resonance turns out to be well worth the wait. While the first album was solidly entrenched in the fusion arena, the current outing is a genre defying and eclectic collection with an emphasis on acoustics. McGregor, still in his twenties, has worked with some top talent including Chris Potter, pianist Jean-Michel Pilc and Stefon Harris. The ...

IN PICTURES

DOEK Festival Amsterdam 2015: Doek Meets Tri-Centric

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Doek is a collective of stellar musicians based in the Amsterdam area dedicated to furthering the creative possibilities in improvised music. In June 2015, they broadened their horizons by inviting Anthony Braxton and his cadre of nine hand-picked younger USA talents to play with ten of their musicians for a week-long adventure in spontaneity using mixed and matched groupings. This transatlantic exchange resulted in an astonishing mix of instantly composed, pre-composed, and conduction music resounding from over 30 mini or ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Yussef Kamaal: Black Focus

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If people still think that the capital of jazz is New York, surely they've never been to London or listened to anything that comes from the British capital these days. Just like New York, London is a melting pot. Because you can find musicians from any part of the world, the produced outcome is extremely cosmopolitan. Yet, since London never had such a rich history of jazz as New York, the music tends to carry a very different vibe while ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jimi Hendrix: Otis Redding - The Jimi Hendrix Experience – Historic Performances Recorded at the Monterey International Pop Festival

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A short time after purchasing my first long-playing vinyl album with my own money, one Joe Cocker: With A Little Help From My Friends (A&M, 1969), I purchased my first and second live recordings, Mad Dogs and Englishmen (A&M, 1970) and Otis Redding -The Jimi Hendrix Experience--Historic Performances Recorded at the Monterey International Pop Festival (Reprise, 1970). I bought all of these records at Osco Drug Store in the University Mall in Little Rock, Arkansas. It was summer and fall ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Earl Thomas At Biscuits & Blues

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Earl Thomas Returns to Biscuits & Blues Earl Thomas Homecoming Biscuits & Blues San Francisco, CA July 7, 2017 Earl Thomas and his potent band ignited the enthusiastic audience at San Francisco's Biscuits & Blues, located near Union Square. Vocalist Thomas' band featured: guitarist and band leader Ben Zinn, drummer Mark Lamson, keyboardist Noah Williams, bassist Tim McNalley, trumpeter Julian Davis and trombonist Erik Dewhirst. Thomas, the consummate showman, said ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Geof Bradfield: Birdhoused

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A horn-fest? That was the initial impression of saxophonist Geof Bradfield's Birdhoused, a set featuring a quintet with no chording instrument and  four horn front line in a live set at the Green Mill Cocktail Lounge. While Bradfield's Melba (Origin Records, 2013) paid tribute to the under-sung trombonist/composer/arranger Melba Liston; and his Roots (Origin Records, 2015) explored the sounds of Leadbelly, Blind Willie Johnson and the Georgia Sea Island Singers, Birdhoused expands the horizons, delving into the disparate sounds of ...


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