30 September, 2018

Stéphane Spira - New Playground (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 57:26 | Size: 131.51 MB | MP3 320 kbps
01. Peter's Run [6:06]
02. Gold Ring Variations [10:00]
03. New York Windows [6:45]
04. Underground Ritual [7:43]
05. Nocturne (Song For My Son) [9:12]
06. New Playground [6:36]
07. Kaleidoscope [4:35]
08. Solid Wood [6:32]
Stéphane Spira – Soprano Saxophone
Joshua Richman – Piano & Fender Rhodes
Steve Wood – Bass
Jimmy Macbride - Drums
Stéphane Spira is a self-taught musician. He pursued an engineering degree, spent some time as an engineer in Saudi Arabia, then headed back to his hometown of Paris to pursue music full-time. Quite an interesting background!

A traditionalist, Spira’s music and playing are both very centrist in style, but great fun to listen to. He is not, however, so much a swing or hard bop player as sort of a ‘60s cool-school sort of guy, and his compositions employ several of the traits one hears in a lot of modern jazz nowadays, i.e., somewhat modal construction and amorphous melodic lines, but lyricism and swinging are prominent features of both his writing and his playing.

Indeed, Spira’s tone is one of his finest features. I’ve heard a great many soprano saxists in recent years, but none who play the instrument with the liquid richness that Spira draws from his instrument. Just listen to him in the Gold Ring Variations, for instance, and you’ll be struck by the richness of his sound, almost like an alto sax. And on this track he is particularly inventive. In addition, the relaxation of his playing rubs off on his bandmates; only pianist Richman gets really busy in his solos, although not so much that he spoils the delicate balance that is set up.

Indeed, as one listens to this CD, one is not so much aware of individual compositions so much as what seems like a continuous flow of music that is interrelated, like a suite, and it is this conception that imbues all of the music, although Underground Ritual and New Playground have their own sort of funky jazz vibe that I liked very much. Oddly, the one thing I did not care for was Wood’s bowed solo in Nocturne; not that the note-choices were poor, but his tone sounded a bit sour to me. I did, however, like all of his pizzicato solos. Solid Wood, the most uptempo number on the CD, makes a fine finish.

A very nice album, perfect for summertime jazz listening.

—© 2018 Lynn René Bayley

Stefon Harris & Blackout - Sonic Creed (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 53:53 | Size: 124.38 MB | MP3 320 kbps
01. Dat Dere
02. Chasin' Kendall
03. Let's Take a Trip to the Sky feat. Jean Baylor
00. 4The Cape Verdean Blues
05. Go
06. Song of Samson
07. Throw It Away
08. Now feat. Jean Baylor
09. Gone Too Soon

Stefon Harris - vibraphone & marimba
James Francies - piano (1-8) & keyboards (1,3,7)
Joshua Crumbly - bass (1-8)
Terreon Gully: drums (1-8)
Casey Benjamin - alto saxophone (1, 2, 4, 5), soprano saxophone (6, 7), vocoder (3, 8)
Mike Moreno - guitar (1, 4, 5, 7, 8)
Jean Baylor - vocals (3, 8)
Regina Carter - violin (8)
Joseph Doubleday - marimba (9)
Daniel Frankhuizen - cello (8)
Pedrito Martinez - percussion (1, 2, 4, 6)
Felix Peikli - clarinet, bass clarinet (1, 2, 4-6, 8)
Elena Pinderhughes - flute (4, 8)

In its most basic function, the music that makes up Sonic Creed serves as a mirror to African American life in the here and now. It explores the history, legacy, struggles, and joys of the Black community, speaking to all of it at once through sound and sentiment.

Sonic Creed arrives almost a decade after this groove outfit's last showing—Urbanus (Concord, 2009)—but the time away hasn't hurt the band. If anything, Blackout has become a more limber group capable of carving out more capacious settings. With key personnel holdovers like drummer Terreon Gully and saxophonist Casey Benjamin, well-suited Blackout newcomers such as pianist James Francies and bassist Joshua Crumbly, and a handful of notable guests, there are new worlds of possibility to be found within this realm.

Opening with an updated take on Bobby Timmons' "Dat Dere," Harris and company immediately nod to Art Blakey's place in the pantheon while painting a funky futurist's vision. The sophisticated yet earhty edges of that opener hearken back to many of Urbanus' signatures, but what follows demonstrates the aforementioned wider gaze: "Chasin' Kendall," a lightly soulful Harris original written for the vibraphonist's two sons, rides peacefully atop a singsong bass line; "Let's Take A Trip To The Sky" is pure loving reverie, a slow jam written for Harris' wife that highlights guest vocalist Jean Baylor's soothing pipes; Horace Silver's "The Cape Verdean Blues," a number that Harris once arranged for the SFJAZZ Collective during his tenure with that super band, bounces, swerves, and shimmers in all the right ways; and album centerpiece "Go" gives Wayne Shorter his due by providing some unexpected turns while also maintaining a prescribed outlook.

Rebekka Bakken - Things You Leave Behind (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 41:43 | Size: 95.40 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. Closer
2. Black Shades
3. Things You Leave Behind
4. Time After Time
5. Yankee Days
6. Shelter
7. True North
8. Charlie
9. Sound of Us
10. Hotel St. Pauli
11. Dance for You

Nordic folk-jazz chanteuse Rebekka Bakken was the most successful exponent of a new generation of Scandinavian jazz singers that also included Silje Nergaard, Sidsel Endresen, and Solveig Slettahjell. Born in Oslo in 1970, Bakken studied violin and piano as a child, and in 1995 relocated to New York City to pursue a professional music career. There she paired with Austrian-born guitarist Wolfgang Muthspiel, and together they toured the local nightclub circuit as a duo. In time Bakken also befriended German pianist Julia Hülsmann, with whom she recorded the 2003 album Scattering Poems, a collection of jazz performances inspired by the poems of e.e. cummings. Upon completing the project Bakken returned to Europe, settling in Vienna and signing a solo deal with the Universum label. Her debut LP, The Art of How to Fall, followed by year's end, and in 2005 she resurfaced with her commercial breakthrough, Is That You? I Keep My Cool followed a year later.

Orrin Evans - Presence (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 1:17:08 | Size: 173.23 MB | MP3 320 kbps
01. The Scythe
02. Question
03. Onward
04. When It Comes
05. Flip the Script
06. Trams
07. Answer
08. Presence
09. When It Comes (alternate take)
Caleb Curtis, alto saxophone
Todd Bashore, alto saxophone
John Raymond, trumpet
Bryan Davis, trumpet
Josh Lawrence, trumpets
David Gibson, trombone
Brent White, trombone
Stafford Hunter, trombones
Troy Roberts, tenor saxophone
Orrin Evans, piano
Madison Rast, bass
Anwar Marshall, drums
Jason Brown, drums
Orrin Evans and the Captain Black Big Band Returns with Raucous Live Recording, Presence: The influence of the late playwright and educator Donald Evans has always loomed large over the Captain Black Big Band. Pianist and bandleader Orrin Evans named the band for his father’s brand of pipe tobacco, the aroma of which always announced his father’s presence in the house. The big band’s third album, Presence, is a celebration of the warmth and spirit of the elder Evans, but more importantly it’s quite simply a celebration – an approach to not only music but life that Evans inherited directly from his parents.

Presence, due out September 21 via Smoke Sessions Records, features a scaled-down 11-piece version of Evans’ long-running big band, recorded live at a pair of venues in his hometown of Philadelphia: Chris’ Jazz Café (where the band made its debut in late 2008) and South Jazz Parlor. The line-up features a core group of collaborators that the pianist tends to refer to as “a family” or “a village” more than a band. Most of the musicians on this recording have played with Captain Black for years, while many of them have contributed compositions and arrangements to the ensemble’s ever-growing book.

The album’s cover art, drawn by a close friend, depicts the face of Donald Evans gazing upon the band, his enlivening spirit embodied by the diversity and raucous sense of joy that Captain Black always brings to the stage. “There was always a party in my household,” Evans says. “I always looked forward to events at the house, where guests would gather around the piano in our living room. That leads into how I approach the Captain Black Big Band. I try to create that party and to have people in the band that are fun seekers.”

That pervasive sense of familial camaraderie shines through the music on Presence, especially in the band’s smaller, tighter incarnation. The band’s downsizing can be explained in part by practical considerations: it makes an easier fit for their long-running stint on the intimate stage of Smoke Jazz & Supper Club, for one. It’s also been easier to manage as Evans’ schedule has become more crowded since joining The Bad Plus in January.

But the 11-piece band also represents a distillation of the larger ensemble, pared down to a close-knit core of players that know each other very well, can navigate the music with the spontaneity of a small band, and simply enjoy the experience of sharing the stage together.

“I look for something different in the Captain Black Big Band,” Evans says. “I look for the ability and desire to be part of a family. I actually get disappointed sometimes when other people don’t see the appeal of that. You have to be ready and down to be a part of this. That all stems from what I saw growing up in my household.”

“In all the bands I lead, my concept is allowing for the unknown to happen,” Evans concludes. “This is a real, raw and honest representation of what happened on stage on those nights.”

Nils Wülker - Decade Live (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 1:17:35 | Size: 178.22 MB | MP3 320 kbps
01. Conquering the Useless (Live)
02. You Cannot Imagine (Live)
03. Wanderlust (Live)
04. Grow (Live)
05. Pull of the Unknown Intro (Live)
06. Pull of the Unknown (Live)
07. Dawn (Live)
08. Today's Gravity (Live)
09. Safely Falling (Live)
10. Five Arches (Live)
11. Season (Live)
12. Circles (Live)
13. Prism (Live)
14. Stripped (Live)
These concert recordings show why Nils Wülker unites different generations in his audience. The thirteen songs sound modern yet timeless, Nils touches the soul, but also ensures movement in the legs. Dancing visitors are just as much part of it as those who listen devoutly and perhaps close their eyes in a pleasurable moment. The events on stage captivate and show so varied that you are so curious what happens next. Funky, groovy, rocking and always eagerly absorbed in ballads, Wülkers Jazz is as diverse as rarely in the German (and international) scene.

A not insignificant part of the colorful design of these concert evenings also has the instrumentation, in the center of which are certainly the trumpet or the flugelhorn. But with the extensive sound of the synthesizer and a melody-rich keyboard on the one hand and the vital, powerful drums and the grooving bass on the other, the songs got a lot of facets. Strong solos always emphasize the collective band action without disturbing the flow. Class are the two songs with the vocals of Rob Summerfield, which reminds me of Nils Landgren.

Niels Lan Doky - Return To Denmark (2009)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 59:27 | Size: 136.08 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. Farewell Song (6:48)
2. Duke Jordan Medley: No Problem / Jordu (6:42)
3. Piano Interlude / The Woman From London (6:46)
4. Alhambra (5:59)
5. Here's That Rainy Day (6:08)
6. Children's Song (5:44)
7. Secret Love (5:11)
8. Return To Denmark (6:05)
9. How Long Has This Been Going On (6:14)
10. Friendship (4:03)
Label - Bro Recordings

Niels Lan Doky - Piano
Morten Ramsbol - Bass
Alex Riel - Drums

Nate Smith - Pocket Change (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 32:32 | Size: 75.10 MB | MP3 320 kbps
01. Get Down, Get Down
02. What It Do
03. DumDum
04. Day and Dusk
05. 'Spress Theyself
06. Ghost Thud (for Mr. Allen)
07. Warble
08. Big/Little Five
09. Paved
10. Warble: Reprise
11. So Be It

Label: Ropeadope
The incomparable Nate Smith has helped invigorate the Jazz scene over the last two decades with his visceral and deep-rooted style of drumming. From work with Jose James, Dave Holland, and Chris Potter, to his Grammy nominated debut album, KINFOLK: Postcards from Everywhere, Nate is on the scene. It seems that every day another musician or fan posts a video of Nate behind the kit, in awe of the style and and polish of his work. Now, Nate has prepared a solo drumset album dubbed Pocket Change - 11 improvised drum tracks of groove and feel, and of course technique.

Pocket Change will be released in three formats - Collector's Vinyl, A Creators software package from Loop Loft/Native Instruments, and in digital download/streaming worldwide. Start right here for the single and find your spot.

'The idea of the album is to use (seemingly) simple grooves as a launching pad … My goal was to develop improvised thematic ideas within groove context to create a storytelling arc.' (Nate Smith)

Lionel Loueke - The Journey (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 52:45 | Size: 120.97 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. Bouriyan 03:13
2. Molika 03:54
3. Bawo 03:57
4. Vi Gnin 05:37
5. Mandé 04:24
6. Kába 04:36
7. Dark Lightning 02:18
8. Vivi 03:18
9. Hope 05:47
10. Gbê 03:48
11. Gbêdetemin 04:05
12. Guira 00:29
13. Okagbé 02:32
14. Reflections on Vi Gnin 02:26
15. The Healing 02:21
Pino Palladino, bass
Cyro Baptista, percussion
John Ellis, soprano saxophone
Vincent Ségal, cello
Patrick Messina, clarinet
Mark Feldman, violin
Massimo Biolcati, bass
Ferenc Nemeth, percussion
Étienne Charles, trumpet, percussion
Dramane Dembélé peul, flute
Christi Joza Orisha, percussion
Robert Sadin, soundscape
A shooting star of the international jazz scene, a genius guitarist demanded by the greatest (Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Sting, Chick Corea), Lionel Loueke is an extraordinary artist. His unique musical personality blends genres and influences, from traditional African rhythms to western jazz. In The Journey, his first solo album for the label Aparté, he sings, vocalises, clicks his tongue, slaps his guitar strings, draws from funk, reaches out for the most unexpected harmonics and unfolds an incredible palette of sounds, like a one-man orchestra. Surrounded by impressive guests from all horizons (Pino Palladino, Patrick Messina, Vincent Ségal, Mark Feldman, Cyro Baptista…) under the direction of maestro Robert Sadin, multiple Grammy Award winner, Loueke delivers here his most personal record. From hopeful ballads (Molika, Kába) to irresistible rhythms (Gbê, Dark Lightning), this journey has an invigorating perfume of freedom.

Kris Davis Quartet - Rye Eclipse (2007)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 43:39 | Size: 100.76 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. Rye Eclipse 10:31
2. Wayne Osker 4:11
3. Prairie Eyes 5:29
4. Minnow Bucket 2:43
5. Empty Beehive 6:06
6. Samuro 3:09
7. Black Tunnel 7:30
8. Rye Resurrected 3:44
Label - Fresh Sound
Recorded in Brooklyn, NYC, 2007

Kris Davis - piano
Tony Malaby - tenor sax
Eivind Opsvik - bass
Jeff Davis - drums

José James - Lean On Me (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 54:19 | Size: 122.26 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. Ain't No Sunshine
2. Grandma's Hands
3. Lovely Day (feat. Lalah Hathaway)
4. Lean On Me
5. Kissing My Love
6. Use Me
7. Who Is He
8. Hello Like Before
9. Just The Two of Us
10. Hope She'll Be Happier
11. The Same Love That Made Me Laugh
12. Better Off Dead
Jose James: vocals;
Pino Palladino: bass;
Kris Bowers: keys;
Brad Allen Williams: guitar;
Nate Smith: drums;
Marcus Strickland: saxophonist;
Takuya Kuroda: trumpet;
Lalah Hathaway: guest vocalist.
Singer-songwriter José James is releasing Lean On Me, a tribute album including 12 of Bill Withers' most undeniable and soulful songs produced by Blue Note president Don Was and recorded in Capitol's legendary Studio B with a dream team band: Pino Palladino (bass), Kris Bowers (keys), Brad Allen Williams (guitar) and Nate Smith (drums). Withers' nuanced perspective on romantic love rings out: the ache of “Ain't No Sunshine,” echoed by Bowers' expressive Rhodes; the celebration of vulnerability on “Use Me,” featuring Takuya Kuroda's Voodoo-evoking brass arrangements; and the bittersweet balladry of “Hello Like Before,” here in a dreamy hue. And then there's “Lovely Day,” which displays Lalah Hathaway's voice dancing along with James’ to all that ineffable joy.

Jon Batiste - Hollywood Africans (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 41:34 | Size: 95.19 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. Kenner Boogie
2. What a Wonderful World
3. Chopinesque
4. Saint James Infirmary Blues
5. Nocturne No. 1 in D Minor
6. The Very Thought of You
7. Green Hill Zone
8. Mr. Buddy
9. Is It Over
10. Smile
11. Don’t Stop

With "Hollywood Africans", Batiste dives deep into his own personal and cultural heritage, weaving an intimate and emotional tapestry out of original material and American standards that carries the listener from the early jazz of New Orleans to the present day. Guiding the acclaimed singer, composer, multi-instrumentalist, and leader of the group Stay Human—since 2015 the house band of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert—was legendary producer T Bone Burnett, whose numerous accolades include Album of the Year Grammys for the O Brother Where Art Thou? soundtrack and Raising Sand by Robert Plant and Alison Krauss.

“The goal was just to collaborate on something that felt authentic to both of us,” says Batiste. “What we came up with was an intimate, stripped-down portrait of who I am, and the lineage of musicians and performers who are really vital to my work and to his. On this record, I want us to bop, dance, laugh and cry to the sound of the music while we remember our black heroes and wield the superpowers they left us with. Because of them, I don't have to wear a mask. I get to be who I am.”

Farnell Newton - Back To Earth (2017)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 56:32 | Size: 129.36 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. Transcendentals 7:21
2. Arietas 3:46
3. Crossing The Tracks 3:46
4. Back To Earth 5:55
5. The Roots 4:55
6. Redefining The Norm 5:32
7. El Gaucho 5:47
8. Road To The South 4:18
9. Gazillionaire 5:42
10. Open Your Mind 4:13
11. Sons Of The Sun 5:21
Farnell Newton – trumpet; Kyle Molitor – trombone; Greg Goebel – piano; Dylan Sundstrom – bass; Christopher Brown – drums.
Jazz is alive and well in Portland…

Most every major metropolitan area has jazz musicians who could have a national presence if they could afford to live in New York City’s highly competitive (and expensive) jazz scene. For various reasons, they choose to remain as “big fish” in smaller jazz markets. Many teach in jazz studies programs at colleges, where they receive health benefits and pensions. They can also serve as first call sidemen for nationally known artists who who visit their locales for single night gigs. (However, it is easier to get these gigs for rhythm section instrumentalists—piano, bass, and drums—than it is for front line horn players).

Posi Tone Records is one of the few labels to feature regional talent as band leaders. In this case, they feature Portland, Oregon trumpeter, Farnell Newton, backed by fellow Rose City talent. Newton is a jazz professor at Portland State University, a program led by Darrell Grant.

Farnell can hold his own in any jazz setting. He has the right tools needed to take command—power, passion, gorgeous tone, and the undefinable presence on stage that I would describe as “swagger.” It’s the assertiveness that marked trumpet greats like Freddie Hubbard, Lee Morgan, and Woody Shaw. When you hear Farnell blow, you sit up and take notice.

On Back to Earth, Newton wrote eight out of the eleven tracks. Trombonist Kyle Molitor provides a perfect front line mate, and their blend brings to mind a Blue Note session from the 1960s, a distinct compliment.

“Transcendentals” opens with a buttery mellifluous ambiance. Greg Goebel’s piano provides sparkling accompaniment. Freddie Hubbard’s “Arietas” is a perfect vehicle for Farnell to burn hot, much like the tune’s author. Dylan Sundstrom, on bass, is notable for a well recorded bottom end, and Goebel again is crisp and swinging.

Drummer Christopher Brown’s title cut is soulful with Goebel’s bluesy piano choruses setting the stage for Newton to gently caress the melody. “The Roots” lets Molitor enter center stage. Wayne Shorter’s “El Gaucho” is hard bop heaven and the band is truly coalescing. “Open Your Mind” provides Newton and Molitor a palette to paint a comforting musical message.

Kudos to Posi Tone for showing that jazz is alive and well in Portland.

David Occhipinti - David Occhipinti (1997)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 58:44 | Size: 133.58 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. Great One
2. David Leaves
3. Tower Images
4. Study Hall
5. And This Means War (Instrumental)
6. Homeless
7. Iceberg
8. Desert Song
9. Marina Di Modica
10. Winter-Time
Label - Occdav Music (selfproduced)

David Occhipinti - guitar
Jim Vivian - bass
Kevin Dempsey - drums
Dave Restivo - piano (1,2,5,8)

Bob Baldwin - Bob Baldwin Presents The American Spirit (2002)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 52:36 | Size: 122.52 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. God Bless America (4:54)
2. Bridge Over Troubled Water (5:36)
3. My Country Tis Of Thee (3:58)
4. Shower The People (5:33)
5. America The Beautiful (2:34)
6. Follow Your Dream (5:15)
7. Lift Every Voice - Count The Ways (5:45)
8. Color Blind (5:35)
9. Let's Roll! (5:18)
10. The Star Spangled Banner (4:55)
11. God Bless The Usa (3:14)

Considering how much popular smooth jazz artists love to play on each other's projects, and especially for a good cause -- in this case, the victims' assistance program Safe Horizon -- it's surprising that it took its musical community almost a year to emerge with its first tribute to America post 9/11. Bob Baldwin is hardly a household name in the genre, but he's been faithfully cranking out some of its funkiest keyboard projects over the past decade. Even if he's a little too synth-and-drum-machine reliant, this is still a fun project which captures the joyful spirit of America in the wake of a troubled time. He bookends the set with two classics on which he plays all the instruments. His lively "God Bless America" offers the Jeff Lorber/ Fender Rhodes retro-keyboard approach, while "God Bless the USA" features the same in a more restrained setting. The overall success of the project is due to his collaborations with saxophonist Kim Waters. There's an easy funk reading of "Bridge Over Troubled Water," the original, gospel-flavored "Lift Every Voice/Count The Ways," Marion Meadows on the shuffling original "Let's Roll!" and Dean James -- who did a few solid genre albums in the mid-'90s -- on the joyful anthem "Color Blind." Phil Perry's powerful falsetto is utilized to powerful emotional effect on "My Country Tis of Thee," but the staid arrangement throughout most of "Shower the People" doesn't give him room to strut his stuff; the best part of this tune is Chuck Loeb's crisp soloing throughout. ~ by Jonathan Widran

Benjamin Herman - Bughouse (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 37:29 | Size: 85.49 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. Announcement 00:38
2. Arrival of the Swifts 02:26
3. The Rubber Room 02:39
4. One for Xero 01:27
5. 五十 02:03
6. Les Boulevardiers 02:45
7. Lovetone 03:59
8. Merrylegs 02:06
9. Pushhändel 01:20
10. Pipa Club 04:05
11. Steve Norman’s True Sax 02:52
12. Lizard Waltz 01:59
13. Treat It Gentle 01:44
14. Gulli Gulli 03:21
15. Zippit 04:05
Benjamin Herman – saxophones
Reinier Baas – Guitar
Peter Peskens – Bass Guitar
Olav van den Berg – Drums
With his latest project 'Bughouse' Dutch based saxophonist Benjamin Herman has finally found the perfect musicians to realize a long-cherished dream of forming a punk jazz quartet. Although Benjamin is a now a seasoned jazzhead with well-earned credentials he was very much influenced by the DIY mentality that was part of the punk ethics in the late seventies. "I started off playing drums when I was nine years old. Everyone in the neighbourhood was into music and everyone was in a band. All these bands made their own records took care of their own artwork and arranged their own gigs. I always thought that was really cool. Later on in life that helped motivate me to have a life in music on my own terms."

Benjamin on drummer Olav van den Berg: "Olav was up on the barricades when it all started in Holland, he played in several key bands on the Dutch hard core scene including one of the loudest and fastest European groups ever, 'Lärm." "He's an incredible musician, I love to play fast and loud but it's a real challenge to keep up with Olav."

Guitarist Reinier Baas is a game changer on the renowned Dutch guitar scene. A highly gifted jazz musician and a very productive composer with a totally unorthodox approach to everything he is involved in. Bassist Peter Peskens of one of Amsterdam's most popular young collectives 'Jungle By Night' is, in spite of his young age, a sort-after bass virtuoso with a remarkably personal sound. He recently graduated with honors at The Amsterdam Conservatory.

"The recording sessions were charged as hell seeing as we had no idea if we would have anything worth releasing at the end of the day. All four of us were way out of comfort zones…in the end we came out with 23 songs in total."

Another big influence is British saxman Xero Slingsby. Xero died far too young from a brain tumor but managed to leave his mark in several European cities busking and gigging in small clubs with his trio. "He often played on Leidseplein in the early eighties. His mix of punk and free jazz and his working class attitude as a performer was really inspiring, much more inspiring than the kind of jazz that was being broadcast on national TV and radio. It was Xero Slingsby and people like John Lurie (The Lounge Lizards) and James Chance (The Contortions) that made me look at being a saxophone player from a totally different perspective."

André Ceccarelli - Golden Land (2006)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 57:20 | Size: 146.45 MB | MP3 320 kbps
01. Love Whispers (5:20)
02. Five Plus Five (4:13)
03. Golden Land (5:16)
04. Free Three (4:38)
05. I’m Through With Love (4:58)
06. 1er Novembre (4:20)
07. Though Dreamers Die (6:22)
08. This Side Up (7:03)
09. Golden Land (instrumental) (5:57)
10. Just One Thought And A Half (5:48)
11. Maybe Sunday Night (3:06)
Label - Cam Jazz

Andre Ceccarelli - drums
Enrico Pieranunzi - piano
Hein van de Geyn - acoustic bass
David El-Malek - saxophone
Elizabeth Kontomanou – vocals


Anachronic Jazz Band - Back in Town! (2013)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 55:14 | Size: 126.16 MB | MP3 320 kbps
01 Confirmation
02 Solar
03 For Lena And Lennie
04 Le temps se meurt (de 4 a 6)
05 Lullaby of Birdland
06 Cooking the Frog
07 Four
08 Armando's Rhumba
09 Tiny's Tempo
10 Remember Rockfeller at Attica
11 In Walked Bud
12 Take Four (Five)
13 Anthropology
14 Airegin

Jazz aux Remparts

Patrick Artero, trompette
Pierre Guicquéro, trombone
Marc Richard, clarinette, saxophone alto
Jean-François Bonnel, clarinette, C-melody sax
André Villéger, clarinette, saxophones soprano & ténor
Philippe Baudoin, piano
François Fournet, banjo
Gérard Gervois, tuba
Sylvain Glévarec, batterie
Daniel Huck, chant, saxophone alto
Göran Eriksson, flûte à bec.

29 September, 2018

Woodstore Quintet feat. Tim Hagans - 41st Parallel (2005)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 57:50 | Size: 129.88 MB | MP3 320 kbps
01. Tim’s Theme (Tedde) 9:07
02. All’ultimo momento (Tedde) 6:22
03. Apple Tree (Tedde) 6:24
04. Shark (Tedde) 7:13
05. Capocaccia (The Wish) (Colin Towns) 7:04
06. XXX (Tedde) 5:17
07. The Bread I Break (Tedde) 9:22
08. Subway (Tedde) 6:49
Label - Nagel Heyer

Massimo Carboni - tenor sax
Tim Hagans - trumpet
Mariano Tedde - piano
Paolo Spanu - bass
Gianni Filindeu - drums

Guest: Maria Pia De Vito - vocals (6,7)

William Stravato - Cybertones (2002)

Genre: Jazz / Jazz-Rock, Fusion | Total Time: 42:32 | Size: 103.43 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. Invisible
2. KC1
3. Master Mind
4. Hot Mushroom
5. No Left No Right
6. Two As One
7. Cheffile
8. Party At Will's
9. Isolation (part II)

William Stravato — guitars
Luigi Mas — keys and strings arrangements
Mario Mazzenga — bass
Tom Rotho — drums

Brett Garsed — guitar solo

Label: Virtuoso Records

Tom Tallitsch - Wheelhouse (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 50:17 | Size: 114.85 MB | MP3 320 kbps

1. Wheelhouse 6:10
2. Schlep City 4:25
3. Outnumbered 6:03
4. Red Eye 5:16
5. Paulus Hook 6:02
6. River 5:31
7. The Crusher 4:31
8. One For Jonny 6:24
9. Gas Station Hot Dog 6:01

Personnel: Tom Tallitsch: sax; Josh Lawrence: trumpet; Jon Davis: piano; Peter Brendler: bass; Vinnie Sperrazza: drums.

Tom Tallitsch's Wheelhouse is a recording in which something honest and genuine springs from the soil of a long established, familiar jazz style. Although pinning a hard bop label on the music is fairly accurate, ultimately it amounts to a quick, glib, descriptive fix that may distort or diminish the character of the record. The same applies to reflexively reaching for influences in the compositions, ensemble work and the soloists. In short, there's too much substance here to brood over how things fit into the scheme of classic albums and tracks from an aficionado's record collection.

Tallitsch and his cohort have a way of making a good impression without generating a lot of noise or straining with exertion. It sounds like the band's record, despite the fact that the tenor saxophonist is the leader. All five hands have piloted relatively recent sessions for Posi-Tone, yet this one doesn't give the impression of a gathering of all stars competing for the listener's attention, or an opportunistic attempt by the label to promote its artist roster. I'm not struck by the disc's originality as much as impressed by the compatibility of the participants. The top and the bottom of the quintet are mutually reinforcing. Listening to Tallitsch's tenor sax or Josh Lawrence's trumpet invariably means the simultaneous taking in of a rhythm section comprised of Jon Davis' piano, Peter Brendler's bass and the drums and cymbals of Vinnie Sperrazza. It's like each player converges and hits the same sweet spot from different angles.

In a record that thrives on moderation—beginning with Tallitsch's straightforward intro to "Wheelhouse"—a number of things add up. For instance, he possesses a knack for counting off tempos that suit the character of his nine compositions. Each in its own way, "Wheelhouse," "Schlep City," "Paulus Hook," "One For Jonny" and "Gas Station Hot Dog" are executed at a pace that feels just right. Throughout their solos, Tallitsch and Lawrence construct a steady current of ideas instead of opting for methods that are jam-packed or verbose. Tallitsch, in particular, refrains from playing anything that isn't absolutely necessary. The leader's subtly emotional turn on "Paulus Hook" and the trumpeter's puckish work during "Gas Station Hot Dog" are a couple of prime examples. There's always enough space to hear Davis comp—for instance, in the midst of Tallitsch's and Lawrence's solos on "Schlep City"—in ways that are witty, mischievous, yet never less then supportive. Brendler is a strong, stalwart presence; during Tallitsch's "Outnumbered" solo, it's as if his bass is leading the band. And drummer Sperrazza has an uncanny way of finding his own place inside of the songs and arrangements, with shifts in patterns and the dynamics of snare drum accents during the head of "Wheelhouse."

In the end, however, the high level of the individual performances isn't really what makes Wheelhouse a noteworthy recording. The particulars aren't quite as important as the sum total of each track. When musing on this record sometime in the future, the positive, coherent, uncluttered group sound will certainly elicit another listen. ~ David A. Orthmann

The Shirt Tail Stompers - Dark Eyes (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 43:23 | Size: 99.36 MB | MP3 320 kbps
01. Perdido (3:44)
02. Take the 'A' Train (2:41)
03. Buck Fever (2:37)
04. I'm Gonna Sit Right Down (3:10)
05. Dark Eyes (3:21)
06. Jive at Five (4:08)
07. Kerfuffle Blues (2:22)
08. Sister Kate (3:10)
09. Maelstrom (2:55)
10. Taps Miller (2:40)
11. Little Jazz (2:39)
12. Stompin' at the Savoy (3:13)
13. You Talk a Little Trash (3:11)
14. Dinah (3:40)

Steven Coombe - Trumpet
Duncan Hemstock - Clarinet and Sax (Vocal on 'Sister Kate')
Callum Au - Trombone
Luca Filastro - Piano (Tracks 1, 4, 6, 9, 11, 13, 14)
JJ Vinten - Piano (Tracks 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, 10, 12)
Kourosh Kanani - Guitar
Dave O'Brien - Double Bass (Vocal on 'I'm Gonna Sit Right Down')
Gaspar Sena - Drums

Sara Oschlag - Vocals ('Take the A Train' and 'Dinah')

Recorded at Porcupine Studios in 2018

The Jelly Roll Jazz Band - Indoors At Last (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 36:29 | Size: 85.62 MB | MP3 320 kbps
01. I Wan'na Be Like You (4:21)
02. Bill Bailey, Won't You Please Come Home (3:53)
03. Sweet Sue, Just You (3:43)
04. My Sweetie Went Away (4:19)
05. After You've Gone (3:22)
06. Under The Sea (2:21)
07. Hiding Under The Bubble Wrap With You (3:23)
08. Les Oignons (2:22)
09. Sweet Georgia Brown (4:12)
10. On The Sunny Side Of The Street (4:33)

The Jelly Roll Jazz Band was originally formed in 2010 by Laurence Marshall, and first performed as a quartet of clarinet, tenor saxophone, banjo and tuba. According to Laurence,

Since those early days the band has developed considerably, and today it usually takes the form of a trio, with clarinet, banjo (or guitar) and double bass (or sousaphone). The band draws its musicians from a pool of around seven regular members depending on who is available, and this fluidity creates a constant stream of fresh inspiration and ideas.

One of the band’s greatest strengths is its flexibility. Much of the music is improvised around a core melody and chord progression, and therefore it is very easy to change or add instruments depending on the occasion and which players are free.

The musicians all originate from Scarborough, and the band still performs regularly in this area. However many of the members now live further afield, and they are available for bookings across the country. Recent performances have taken them as far afield as London, Darlington and Warwick.

Repertoire and Influences:
The style of music they play is traditional (‘Dixieland’) jazz, and they have a repertoire of around 100 songs so are able to play for hours without repeating themselves. Furthermore, they are capable of playing for hours without repeating themselves. They cover a range of standards from the 1900s to the 1930s, including such favourites as ‘Down By the Riverside’, ‘When the Saints’ and ‘The Sheik of Araby’. Their repertoire also features more recent hits like ‘The Bare Necessities’ and ‘Moon River’, and they have even branched out into ‘90s pop with versions of ‘My Heart Will Go On’ and ‘…Baby One More Time’. Always keen to broaden their horizons, the band have recently begun writing original material, and they are currently working on a trad. jazz version of Stravinsky’s ‘The Rite of Spring’.

Their influences include jazz greats such as Benny Goodman, Louis Armstrong, Fats Waller, Jelly Roll Morton and Chris Barber. The eccentric humour of The Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band plays a big part in their performance style as well, often lending a slightly surreal edge to proceedings.

Steve Coleman - Invisible Paths: First Scattering (2007)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 1:11:33 | Size: 162.58 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1 Ascending Numeration: Reformed 4:05
2 Shift 2:07
3 Possession Of Images 6:35
4 Negative Secondary 4:41
5 The Witness 5:26
6 Invisible Paths 3:11
7 Fundamental Disturbance I 4:02
8 Fecundation: 070118 4:32
9 Embodiment 5:04
10 Facing West 5:05
11 Clouds 7:29
12 Back At The Crib 3:06
13 Cardinal-Fixed-Mutable 2:36
14 Fundamental Disturbance II 4:30
15 Individualization 4:14
16 Fecundation: 070118 (Another View) 4:19

Recorded on March 28 and April 10, 2007. Steve Coleman plays Selmer saxophones and Vandoren reeds.
'Fecundation: 070118' is a poem by Patrícia Magalhães published by Prosoema Editions.

Tzadik ‎– TZ 7621

Alto Saxophone, Written-By – Steve Coleman
Lyrics By [Poem] – Patrícia Magalhães (tracks: 8, 16)
To admire the music of saxophonist Steve Coleman is, indeed to admire the man. From his origins as a Chicago musician to his current life full of exploration of philosophy, musicology, symbols, and language, he has kept a directness and lucidity about his musical presentation. Invisible Paths: First Scattering is his first solo session, coming twenty-some years after he co-founded the M-Base collective that included (among many others) Greg Osby, Ravi Coltrane, Robin Eubanks, and Jean-Paul Bourelly.

He did record a hard-to-find duo once with bassist Dave Holland in 1991, Phase-Space (DIW, 1994. Like the duo, this disc presents Coleman up front and with a clear manifest. Then again, his voice is almost instantly recognizable on all his recordings. This ambitious solo effort doesn't rework standards of the familiar jazz canon as much as it presents Coleman's music stripped of that familiar odd metered drumming and rhythms. Those familiar with Coleman's work will "hear the rhythm section in these unaccompanied tracks. As he is known to do, he begins a track propelling the music; it's just that the rhythm section never steps in. You know (and feel) that his familiar time signatures are driving this music forward. He even accompanies a bit of clapping with wordless rhythm sound to open "Fecundation: 070118 and offers a spoken "bom-bom refrain to his horn on "Facing West. Elsewhere he offers a bit of meandering improvisation on "Embodiment, grabbing bit of ballads and tones to pave a roadmap. These sixteen tracks stay true to the music of Steve Coleman. His style, recognizably showcased here as the skeleton upon which he hangs the body of his ever expanding work. - Mark Corroto

Sofi Hellborg - To Give Is To Get (2005)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 49:32 | Size: 124.12 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1 Wouldn't That Be Fun 4:37
2 My Dream 4:55
3 To Give Is To Get 5:19
4 Har Du Hört 4:20
5 If You Ever 5:34
6 Jungle In My Livingroom 5:43
7 Bring It On Through 4:29
8 The Light 4:58
9 My Heart Is My Home 3:38
10 We Want No More War 5:55

Recorded at SFR in Malmö, Sept. / Oct. 2005.

Ajabu! ‎– AJABUCD002

Bass, Backing Vocals – Mats Ingvarsson
Composed By – Jason Diakite (tracks: 4), Magnus Karlsson (4) (tracks: 1, 2, 4, 7)
Congas – Sal Dibba (tracks: 1, 7, 10)
Drums – Jean-Francois Ludovicus (tracks: 2, 5, 6, 8-10), Tony Allen (tracks: 1, 3, 4, 7)
Drums [Djembe] – Sal Dibba (tracks: 8)
Electric Piano [Fender Rhodes], Keyboards, Backing Vocals – Ola Hendén
Guitar, Backing Vocals – Elias Källvik
Organ, Mixed By, Producer – Jens Lodén (tracks: 7)
Percussion [Cucia] – Mats Ingvarsson (tracks: 2)
Percussion [Handclap] – Erik Alheim (tracks: 10), Mattias Alheim (tracks: 10)
Saxophone [Alto], Saxophone [Soprano], Flute, Vocals, Percussion [Small], Composed By, Producer – Sofi Hellborg
Saxophone [Baritone] – Sven Andersson (3) (tracks: 1, 7)
Trombone, Backing Vocals – Ola Åkerman
Vocals – Timbuktu
Vocals [Rap] – Timbuktu (tracks: 4)

Sofi Hellborg - Drumming Is Calling (2007)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 49:31 | Size: 114.13 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1 Government Lies 5:21
2 Mother Earth 5:11
3 Maybe I Was Dreaming 5:15
4 My Love 5:01
5 It's Ok Now 6:33
6 All The Signs 4:34
7 Drumming Is Calling 4:55
8 Tell Your Mama 5:35
9 Cannot Stop To Play 5:07
10 Bottledance 2:03

Recorded in August 2007 at Reingolds Studio, Lund

Ajabu! ‎– AJABUCD011

Alto Saxophone, Soprano Saxophone, Vocals, Kalimba [Ndenge], Flute, Instruments [Bottle] – Sofi Hellborg
Baritone Saxophone – Ed Epstein (2) (tracks: 1, 3, 5)
Bass, Vocals, Instruments [Bottle] – Mats Ingvarsson
Composed By – Sofi Hellborg
Drums – Jean-Francois Ludovicus
Keyboards, Vocals, Instruments [Bottle] – Ola Hedén
Lyrics By – Magnus Karlsson (4)
Percussion, Vocals – Sal Dibba
Trombone, Vocals, Instruments [Bottle] – Ola Åkerman

Shai Maestro - The Dream Thief (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 48:07 | Size: 106.51 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. My Second Childhood
2. The Forgotten Village
3. The Dream Thief
4. A Moons Tale
5. Lifeline
6. Choral
7. New River, New Water
8. These Foolish Things - remind me of you
9. What Else Needs to Happen?
Shai Maestro: piano
Jorge Roeder: double-bass
Ofri Nehemya: drums
“Hearing the Shai Maestro Trio is like awakening to a new world – a world of wonders, excitement, beauty and uncertainty,” All About Jazz has suggested. The Dream Thief, the first ECM release by Maestro as a leader, presents the Israeli pianist fronting the latest incarnation of his uncommonly interactive, atmospherically expansive trio, featuring new drummer Ofri Nehemya, a fellow Israeli, and its bassist from the start, Jorge Roeder, a native of Peru. The album also includes several searching solo performances by Maestro. His solo interpretation of Israeli singer-songwriter Matti Caspi’s “My Second Childhood” raises the curtain on a program of characteristically vivid Maestro originals.

Maestro, who made his first ECM appearance on vocalist Theo Bleckmann’s 2017 album Elegy, made a name for himself playing in Israeli bassist Avishai Cohen’s popular band from 2006 to 2011. A resident of Brooklyn and a dual Israeli and American citizen, the pianist also played in star drummer Mark Guiliana’s quartet and has recently worked in a duo with saxophonist Chris Potter. After four trio albums with Roeder and drummer Ziv Ravitz, Maestro drafted Nehemya into the group, which gathered to record The Dream Thief at the studio in Lugano. Maestro chose the darker-toned of two Steinway model D pianos on offer, apt for what he calls “the dreamy, cinematic quality” of the music he had written for the session. With Manfred Eicher producing, the atmosphere in the studio was one of being “open to the magic of the moment,” Maestro recalls. “I had a clear intention for the pieces, but I knew that Manfred likes to let the music breathe, to get to the essence of the music. For instance, my composition ‘Lifeline’ had been a double-time burner live, but Manfred suggested that we take it down about 50 bpm and concentrate on making the melody sing, in the way Charlie Haden might do. That really transformed the tune.”

Another spontaneous creation was Maestro’s solo performance of Caspi’s “My Second Childhood,” a song about experiencing life anew via the eyes of a child. The Israeli composer is one of the pianist’s “all-time favorites – I grew up listening to him, and even took lessons with Caspi when I was 12,” he says. “I had arrived at the studio early before Jorge and Ofri, just to commune with the piano. I hadn’t planned to include that tune, but it just came out, as it’s so deep in my system. I have a real appreciation for the DNA of a great song, where the melody and the harmony go perfectly together. It’s the same thing with ‘These Foolish Things,” which is also such a beautifully crafted song. I was just improvising, and it morphed into a kind of avant-garde treatment – yet with the melody still like a red thread wound through it.”

Richard Sussman Quintet - Live at Sweet Rhythm (2010)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 1:01:42 | Size: 140.77 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. Waiting 7:08
2. Mary's Song 7:02
3. Soultrane 7:27
4. Tiahuanaco 9:25
5. What's New 5:21
6. Lady of the Lake 9:43
7. Free Fall 15:36
Label - Origin Records

Richard Sussman - piano
Tom Harrell - trumpet
Jerry Bergonzi - tenor sax
Mike Richmond - bass
Jeff Williams - drums

Rainer Böhm - Hýdōr (Piano Works XII) (2017)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 49:26 | Size: 113.16 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. Bass Study (Part I) 05:04
2. Bass Study (Part II) 02:45
3. Hydor 02:24
4. Badi Bada 03:46
5. Terzen 02:09
6. Two Minds 02:10
7. Catalyst 05:54
8. Brazilian Movie Song 05:21
9. Querstand 01:50
10. Expansion and Reduction 04:21
11. Thumb Up, Broken Toe 05:04
12. Hypo 04:52
13. Hydor Reprise 03:46

Rainer Böhm / piano

Recorded by Stefan Deistler at Tonstudio Loft, Cologne, August 10 & 11, 2017
“ACT seems to be on a mission to introduce the world to Europe's rising new jazz-classical pianists,” the UK’s leading jazz critic John Fordham of the Guardian has noted. And jazz for piano has indeed always been part of ACT's DNA. The label’s roster includes pianists who have achieved international renown such as Joachim Kühn, Esbjörn Svensson and Michael Wollny; and more recently the Austrian David Helbock has started to be recognized as the major talent he clearly is. Siggi Loch started the dedicated album series “Piano Works” to present the finest in solo piano playing, and Rainer Böhm with his album “hýdōr” becomes the latest pianist to enter this pantheon.

Born in Ravensburg in Southern Germany in 1977 and now based in Cologne, Böhm is considered by critics to be one of the country’s outstanding jazz pianists, yet among the wider public he has not reached the level of recognition he deserves. He has made his mark through some excellent projects – with saxophonists Johannes Enders and Lutz Häfner, and trumpeter Axel Schlosser, for example. In 2016 with drummer Bastian Jütte’s quartet he won the award which is widely held to be the most important in German jazz, the New German Jazz Prize – and he won the Soloist Prize as well. He teaches at the conservatoires in Nuremberg and Mannheim, where he is one of their youngest professors.

Böhm is also known as a long-standing member of the trio of Germany’s pre-eminent bassist, Dieter Ilg. The success and the impact that this group has achieved are at least in part attributable to Böhm’s remarkable piano playing, notably in its jazz adaptations of the greats of classical music – Verdi, Wagner, Beethoven and Bach. Indeed, the concept of crossing such frontiers is at the core of Böhm's musical identity, and is to be found in its purest form on “hýdōr”. Böhm is one of those genre-defiers for whom classical music and jazz are not in opposition to each other, but perfectly complementary polarities situated around a central task: how to convey emotions through music.

The way Böhm has now risen to this challenge as a solo pianist is magnificent. He is able to rely on a stupendous technique: seldom can such deft alternation of left and right hands in melody and chordal accompaniment been heard as in the two parts of Böhm's “Bass Study”. Böhm also uses chromaticism in a highly original way on “hýdōr”, not only in pieces such as “Querstand” (where it is to be expected, the title, is the German for the musical term ‘false relation’), but also on “Terzen” (thirds) in which chromatic twists have a captivating way of subverting the melodic sweetness. In “Expansion And Reduction” Böhm achieves exactly what the title promises: wonderful harmonic resolutions, strongly rhythmic playing, and contrasting aggressive syncopation with a calm steady pulse as an underlying ostinato.

All of this allows him to exploit the deepest well of his creativity, which is his inexhaustible melodic inventiveness. Again and again, irresistible melodies emerge; they can be ethereal miniatures reminiscent of Grieg as in the title track “hýdōr”, heavily romantic as in the agitated tune “Catalyst”, skittish as in the bebop-style “Thumb Up, Broken Toe”, or gently lyrical as in “Hypo”. Another kind of fascination comes from a rhythmically superimposed melody in “Badi Bada” – which dances carefree over clusters in the left hand à la Philip Glass.

The reason that Böhm's playing, compositions and improvisations are so affecting is that they are so subtle. He prefers allusion to heart-on-sleeve and favours themes which are pared-down (and which can also change in surprising ways) in place of over-obvious motifs. They draw the listener deep into a world which is always tinged with melancholy. “That’s probably in line with my character,” he reflects. In “hýdōr” Böhm has impressively joined the ranks of the great piano romantics. His highly individual voice makes a new and distinguished addition to the “Piano Works” series.

Omar Sosa & Yilian Canizares - Aguas (2018)

Genre: Jazz / Vocal Jazz | Total Time: 54:27 | Size: 124.31 MB | MP3 320 kbps
01. Duo de Aguas
02. Dos Bendiciones
03. De La Habana y Otras Nostalgias
04. Milonga
05. O Le Le
06. Sanzara
07. Sonrisas de Ninos
08. Oshun
09. Se Van Los Mios
10. La Respiracion
11. D2 de Africa

Pianist Omar Sosa and violinist-vocalist Yilian Cañizares have come together to create Aguas, a beautiful and very personal album. Featuring their compatriot, percussionist Inor Sotolongo, Aguas reflects the perspectives of two generations of Cuban artists living outside their homeland, interpreting their roots and traditions in subtle and unique ways. Songs range from the poignant to the exuberant, and are expressive of the exceptional musical chemistry, poetic sensibilities, and originality of the artists. The material on Aguas is an inventive and engaging mix of the artists' Afro-Cuban roots, Western classical music, and jazz. The album is dedicated to Water, and espe- cially to Oshun, the Goddess of Love and Mistress of Rivers in the Lucumí tradition of Yoruba ancestry known in Cuba as Santería a spiritual practice important to both artists. As water is synonymous with life, and energy, and strength, and space, the music of the album is inspired by the important influences of water - its hidden powers, its infinite transmutations, and its relentless creation. There is a sense, as well, for Omar and Yilian, of how water represents both sepa- ration from, and nostalgia for, the land of their birth. The 11 tracks on Aguas were written and produced by Omar and Yilian, and recorded and mixed at Artesuono Studios in Udine, Italy by Stefano Amerio.

Nitai Hershkovits - New Place Always (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 36:36 | Size: 85.83 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. Red Wagon Go 03:07
2. Annette & Issac 02:15
3. Go Go Stay 03:06
4. Explaining Sage 02:28
5. Jenny Wren 02:49
6. Woman's Reach 03:06
7. Green Hill Pearls 03:00
8. South to Cairo 02:31
9. Helicopter 03:53
10. King's Seat 02:13
11. Double Astral Move 02:46
12. Oye Asem 02:30
13. Now You 02:58

Nitai Hershkovits, piano
Pianist and composer Nitai Hershkovits has been described as a ‘Genuine prodigy’ by BBC music. He is a charismatic performer with an incredibly strong voice and musical vision. His dynamic playing crosses boundaries and genres thanks to a light, elegant touch that conveys a full spectrum of deep emotions and contrasts. As a solo artist, Nitai Hershkovits’ repertoire consists mainly of original work written for piano, giving space for interpretation. Nitai started playing the clarinet at the age of twelve, only to discover his love for the piano at age fifteen. Around that time, he was first exposed to the sound of jazz giants such as Wynton Kelly and Sonny Clark. By the age of seventeen, Nitai had moved to Tel Aviv to combine regular school with private music and piano lessons under the guidance of jazz educators Amit Golan and Yuval Cohen. In 2011, Nitai joined bassist Avishai Cohen’s group. As part of Cohen’s Trio as well as of other symphonic projects, they recorded three albums together.

In 2016 Nitai relocated to New York City and is keeping a busy schedule, touring and recording. New Place Always is a collection of melodies that have resonated through time, long enough to evoke a sense of folkloric familiarity. Nitai writes: “Before the recording, I had all kinds of ideas, but we wanted the music to fit the piano and the room, so I wrote most of it there. The rest of the tunes consist of songs that were composed in NY and hand-picked renditions of music by people who inspired me at that time. Even though it has been 17 years since I took my first Piano lesson, its’ familiarity doesn’t reveal itself fully it is almost like coming back to a place I've visited before, yet have never been to.”

Melina Paxinos - Circle of Oddness (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 26:02 | Size: 59.52 MB | MP3 320 kbps
01. Intro
02. Odd 456
03. For My Dad
04. Odd 7
05. Non Odd 8
06. Circle of Oddness
07. Outro

Melina Paxinos - composition & alto saxophone
Yiannis Papadopoulos - keys
George Kostopoulos - bass
Dimitris Klonis - drums
Spiros Lefkofridis - sound

Lars Danielsson & Paolo Fresu - Summerwind (2018)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 49:15 | Size: 112.74 MB | MP3 320 kbps

1. Autumn Leaves 03:57
2. Saluto dardamente 02:54
3. Le matin 03:20
4. Stilla Storm 02:56
5. Jag lyfter ögat mot himmelen 04:04
6. Un Vestido Y Un Amor 03:53
7. Drexciya 01:48
8. Dardusó 03:55
9. Stanna Tid 03:00
10. Sleep Safe and Warm 04:25
11. April in Dardegna 03:40
12. Amigos 02:50
13. Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme 03:06
14. Dardodentro 02:53
15. De la solitude mesurée 02:34

Lars Danielsson, bass, cello
Paolo Fresu, trumpet, flugelhorn

Recorded at Nilento Studio, Gothenburg, May 14-15, 2018

Some people talk a lot, whereas others keep hold of what is important, and only need a few words to get to their point. The same is true in music. Lars Danielsson and Paolo Fresu, who have now teamed up, are two musicians who choose the notes they play with extreme care. “Summerwind”, their first joint studio project, brings the Swedish master bassist/cellist’s gorgeous sound on both instruments and his fine sense for simple and haunting melodies into a partnership with the bright, airy tones of one of Europe's most lyrical trumpeters whose way of “playing it cool” has such distinctive expressiveness.

Together, Danielsson and Fresu don’t just create atmosphere and colour; there is also feeling here – and real depth. Both the music and the interplay between these players are, one might say, ‘such stuff as dreams are made on.’

The duo context offers extensive space for the players to let their musical ideas develop. Yet the decisive element for both of these musicians is not that they should play a lot, but that the focus should remain on what they play. Fewer notes are far more effective than many, and that is how the poetry develops from both instrumentalists as they create a mood that is almost meditative.

“It's about doing the right thing at the right time,” says Lars Danielsson. “That's the challenge of playing in a duo. You can't hide behind other instruments in this configuration.” Danielsson speaks from a long experience of having worked in this format, notably with the Polish pianist Leszek Możdżer (on the album “Pasodoble”) or with the singer Cæcilie Norby (on the album “Just The Two Of Us”). Paolo Fresu is also a master at making every moment count. His work as part of the international Mare Nostrum Trio with French accordionist Richard Galliano and Swedish pianist Jan Lundgren bears impressive testament to this. (Note: only two weeks after the recording with Danielsson, Fresu came back to Nilento Studio just south of Gothenburg with this trio to record the third Mare Nostrum album, which will be released in Spring 2019).

“I love Paolo's playing, it's spiritual and his sound is unique. He makes me improvise in a new way,” Danielsson says of his duo partner, with whom he was working for the first time in a studio on “Summerwind”.

Producer Siggi Loch had the idea of bringing these two musicians into the studio together. He has a knack for identifying musical soulmates, and this collaboration proves it again: the pair built up an almost telepathic relationship during the recording. That feeling is palpable, for example, in the piece “Dardusó”, which was created spontaneously in the studio, and in which all of Danielsson’s and Fresu’s combined trust is given over to the wisdom of the moment. In addition to pieces composed especially for this duo by both musicians, “Summerwind” features interpretations of especially selected and well-known originals, from a Bach cantata to a Swedish folk song to film music by Krzysztof Komeda.

In “Summerwind”, enchanting melodies flow with an instinctive and natural grace and elegance. They develop in long arcs which bring a sense of profundity and contemplation. In a world in constant danger of overheating, Danielsson's and Fresu’s music is a fresh and soothing breeze.

Kaori Kobayashi - Urban Stream (2013)

Genre: Jazz / Smooth Jazz | Total Time: 1:00:28 | Size: 138.36 MB | MP3 320 kbps
01. Prayer (Kaori Kobayashi) (5:40)
02. Time (Kaori Kobayashi) (5:34)
03. Dream Market (Kaori Kobayashi) (4:46)
04. Gotta Go to School (Interlude) (Kaori Kobayashi) (0:32)
05. Gotta Go to School (Kaori Kobayashi) (4:22)
06. Solitude (Kaori Kobayashi) (4:37)
07. Cats & Dog (Kaori Kobayashi) (4:33)
08. Tears (Kaori Kobayashi) (4:48)
09. Sultry Nights (Kaori Kobayashi) (5:16)
10. Back Street (Kaori Kobayashi) (4:40)
11. Lovin’ You (Minnie Riperton, Richard Rudolph) (4:52)
12. September (Maurice White, Al McKay, Alta Sherral Willis) (5:08)
13. City Lights (Kaori Kobayashi) (5:44)

Jorge Rossy & Michael Kanan Quartet - Bud (2017)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 57:11 | Size: 129.85 MB | MP3 320 kbps
01. Blues Pearl 5:22
02. Monopoly 4:23
03. I'll Keep Loving You 6:32
04. Tempus Fugit 5:19
05. Parisian Throughfare 4:07
06. Celia 4:30
07. Hallucinations 3:47
08. Willow Grove 3:10
09. Dusk In Sandi 3:07
10. The Fruit 6:02
11. Un Poco Loco 4:54
12. Bouncing With Bud 5:18

All songs composed by Bud Powell

Jorge Rossy (vibraphone & marimba)
Michael Kanan (piano)
Putter Smith (bass)
Jimmy Wormworth (drums)

Recorded at "Bon Repos" Begues, Barcelona, July 25 & 26, 2017.

Jarek Bothur Quartet - Lilla Chezquiz (2010)

Genre: Jazz | Total Time: 56:34 | Size: 128.86 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. Tonality Passage 10:12
2. 5.2. 7:47
3. Circular Motion 8:46
4. Lilla Chezquiz 2:04
5. Velocity 8:16
6. A Light Of Hope 9:46
7. Simple Story 9:43
Label - Jazz Forum Records

Jarek Bothur - tenor sax
Kuba Pluzek - piano
Max Mucha - bass
Grzegorz Maslowski - drums

Jacqueline Tabor - The Lady In The Gown (2018)

Genre: Jazz / Jazz Vocals | Total Time: 50:40 | Size: 116.21 MB | MP3 320 kbps
1. On Green Dolphin Street (4:05)
2. I Can't Give You Anything But Love (2:23)
3. Autumn Leaves (3:02)
4. Misty (4:20)
5. Lady In The Gown (2:56)
6. Caravan (1:36)
7. Tight (3:06)
8. When Lights Are Low (3:46)
9. Dindi (3:30)
10. I Fall In Love Too Easily (2:32)
11. That's All (2:46)
12. Mood Indigo (4:53)
13. It Could Happen To You (4:16)
14. Never Make A Move Too Soon (2:34)
15. Crazy He Calls Me (4:56)

The Lady in the Gown is the third solo outing from Seattle-based cabaret vocalist Jacqueline Tabor. Whether fans like their music with a cup of blues or a few scoops of adult pop, Tabor’s vocalese is palatable for them all. She shows the smoothness of Sarah Vaughan, the spontaneity of Joss Stone, and a catchy rhythmic timing that personalizes her sound. Instinctively, she moves her voice in ways that makes it distinguishable.

Joined by drummer Max Holmberg, bass player Greg Feingold, and guitarist Cole Schuster, Tabor offers a comfy respite with the familiar gusto of jazz vocalist Nancy Wilson, shrouded in a moonlight ambience. “Misty,” most of all, showcases this combination. Kicking the tempo up a couple of notches, the recording moves into the title track. An original number, the tune has all the pumping grooves and finesse of R&B-infused jazz. Tabor’s spontaneity thrives under these conditions.

Her rendition of Duke Ellington’s “Caravan” is flavored with exotic tribal beats and a spiritual voicing in her register that’s inviting. Imbued with a joyful swinging tone, Tabor sings every track like each was made for her. From the sparse bongo beats of “When Lights Are Low” to the smoky blues atmospherics of “Never Make a Move Too Soon,” Tabor tailors her voice to the mood.

Tabor’s vocal expressions give the tracks depth and meaning – a talent that consistently makes her able to penetrate audiences. Proving she is more than an artist who covers other writers’ works, Tabor shows a passion and reverence for the music she records that touches the listener.

Her understanding of blues music and its origins comes from studying such subjects at Southern University of Baton Rouge in Louisiana. She honed her talent and confidence by performing in clubs throughout the North Pacific of the U.S. Influenced and impacted by a number of jazz singers before her, Tabor developed a presence, able to influence other vocalists and make an impact on the direction that cabaret jazz is presently taking. For a newcomer to radio listeners, Tabor is a well-versed artist.
Susan Francesny