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Find full CD and individual track reviews of your favorite jazz artists right here, and hopefully you also discover some new artists to add to your collection as well.

Under the Sun is the title of the outstanding contemporary jazz release on Patrick's Song Factory from the masterful keyboardist/composer Patrick Bradley. His initial solo release, Come Rain or Shine, appeared four years ago serving as the artist's formal introduction. On Under the Sun the artist has emancipated all his enormous creative chops to craft a modern tour de force that provides gratifying classy excellence throughout. 
Monika Herzig is a supremely talented jazz pianist/composer/arranger who was born in a small village in Germany. Upon obtaining the chance to come to the United States on a student exchange program, she seized the opportunity to further her jazz studies and now has merited a prestigious position teaching music at Indiana University. Her new enchanting CD is titled Come With Me, and includes a DVD which features several live performances and penetrating background information and interviews with both herself and fellow musicians. The CD exhibits a profound harmonic density with the music manifesting itself on many levels; much like…
White Hills' second album for Thrill Jockey records is in part, based on corporate misgivings and an insipid quality of life in America. Here, the musicians generate space-rock, modern psychedlia and noise music to shape a rather punishing sequence of events. And from the noise or volume perspective, these gents would give vintage Black Sabbath a run for the money.
Founder of the seminal progressive-rock band King Crimson, guitarist Robert Fripp employs his legendary Frippertronics effects with formidable saxophonist Theo Travis on this resonating live release culled from a performance at the Coventry Cathedral in the U.K. Travis’ work with the Soft Machine Legacy instills a deep-rooted sense of British progressive-rock colonialism while teaming with the fabled and undeniably influential guitarist. And his escalating stature within jazz and rock vistas has served him well amid numerous first-call session gigs and solo endeavors. Here, the duo parlays a rather sanctified realm of musical notions.
In the music press, much (perhaps too much) has been made of the need for American jazz musicians to preserve traditional jazz sounds. Never mind that the truest tradition of jazz is one of constant change and rebirth, many use this historical preservation imperative as an excuse to simply regurgitate the past over and over until the listening public is inundated with CDs titled 'So-And-So Plays The Standards.' In fact, what jazz really needs to remain relevant in the 21st Century is original compositions, and a deeper, cross-cutting understanding of the myriad ways that contemporary musical styles relate to jazz…
Frank Carlberg's "Tivoli Trio" is one of those rare piano trio beasts that makes an immediate impression. It helps that Carlberg himself is a fascinating composer who has an immediately recognizable touch on the keys. He's also one of those players who's impossible to pigeonhole. His precise, lively piano playing seems informed by classical music, but he's a jazz dude through and through. There's no gimmick here – no pop covers and no bad boy posturing. Even within the jazz realm, Carlberg's style is idiosyncratic – he's clearly not a Chick / Herbie / McCoy / Bill Evans acolyte. Nor…
25.06.2011

Agogic by Agogic

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Agogic is, in some ways, a musical homecoming celebration for Seattle natives Vu and D'Angelo (whose work with Matt Wilson, Human Feel and Kurt Rosenwinkel is nothing short of remarkable) following extended stays in Boston and New York City. Agogic's other two members – bassist Luke Bergman and drummer Evan Woodle – are products of Seattle's very fertile jazz and experimental music scene. With this young and extremely capable rhythm section in tow, Vu and D'Angelo are free to explore all sorts of stylistic variations and intersections, unfettered by big city music politics and the ensuing creative burnout.
The story keeps unfolding for this fabled trio that released its first outing in 1978. With rest stops along the way, the musicians' synergy remains as a source of amazement, coupled with their perpetual creative sparks that sculpt a route embedded with fresh concepts and supreme musicianship. 
New York-based organist Jared Gold leads a no-nonsense set of original progressive jazz compositions on All Wrapped Up, his fourth release for Posi Tone Records. Along with a trio of acclaimed sidemen—tenor saxophonist Ralph Bowen, trumpeter Jim Rotundi and drummer Quincy Davis—Gold draws deep into the well of organ-led jazz, preserving the styles of some of the genre's more intricate pioneers, particularly Don Patterson and Larry Young.The disc's high flying opener, "My Sentiments Exactly," features a twisting melody, deftly pronounced by Gold, Bowen and Rotundi. All three soloists careen through the tunes' clever changes and boisterous bebop tempo. The angular…
Who would have guessed that British singer and actress Julie Tippetts, known for her work with organ great Brian Auger; affiliations with Rod Stewart and recordings with husband, pianist Keith Tippett would lead to her alliance with avant-gardist Martin Archer? Stranger things have happened as they say, yet with the follow-up to Ghosts of Gold (Discus 37CD, 2009) the vocalist's charismatic contributions yield additional rewards.
One of the preeminent soprano saxophonists in modern jazz, Jane Ira Bloom possesses more than just technique.  Few jazz artists are able to project a distinct or personalized sound.  For example, most ardent jazz aficionados would be able to identify her in a Downbeat magazine style blindfold test.  Once again, Bloom imparts memorable compositions, underscored with sinuous developments and a prevalent sense of intrigue.
Adventurous expressionism is a key factor within semi-structured or avant jazz-based endeavors.  With their second quartet outing for Intakt Records, pianist Sylvie Courvoisier and violinist Mark Feldman cover a gamut of articulately designed modes of interaction.  Introspective, sublime and occasionally foreboding, the quartet engineers a potpourri of delicacies, all executed with a deterministic modality.
Even by modern-day standards, jazz piano trios are not customarily designed with sheer firepower and a gargantuan rhythmic presence.   On this album set for USA release in June 2011, Japanese pianist Hiromi fuses her energized musical persona with revered artists, bassist Anthony Jackson and drummer Simon Phillips. 
The album title may not intimate that there are quite a few intricacies going on under-the-hood. Essentially, venerable jazz guitarist Bruce Arnold reformulates and reengineers customary time signatures with manipulations of standard blues forms. However, from a sky-view, it's an album that is nestled within progressive-jazz stylizations. But Arnold's numerous slants and acute rhythmic permutations generate an irrefutable contrast to the norm.
"Multiple Grammy-Award winning guitarist, singer and producer Paul Brown has the Midas tough. With over 50 #1 smooth jazz radio hits credit, the innovative guitar God has engineered and produced for virtually every top contemporary jazz artist during the past two decades. Brown's talents have been summoned by such luminaries as George Benson, Patti Austin, Al Jarreau, Boney James, Luther Vandross and Kirk Whalum among countless others. Featuring Paul's soulful vocal smash, 'Love You Found Me,' 'Toast and Jam,' 'Sugarfish' and more!! Paul Brown is the most prolific hit maker in the history of Smooth Jazz. -Shanachie "I'm particularly proud…
A serious sculpture of musical superiority molded from the pulse of Dave Grusin's intellect as well as crafted by exceptional precision, opens the music sheets of this new Heads Up project An Evening with Dave Grusin. One of the world's top ivory manipulators in iconic fashion unravels genius into entertainment this one sunset. An Evening with Dave Grusin is a renaissance of unique temperament, from keys to vibraphone...