Tags
Music

The Chad Taylor Trio Get Funky and Fiery on 'The Daily Biological'

A nimble jazz power trio of drums, tenor sax, and piano, the Chad Taylor Trio is free and fun, funky and fiery on The Daily Biological.

Recent
Music

A Look Back at the Troubled Sessions for James Booker's Final Album, 'Classified'

Producer Scott Billington remembers capturing New Orleans piano legend James Booker's final, troubled days as a performer."One night he might wander around the club, staring at the ceiling, or he might get up and imitate Woody Woodpecker."

Music

Steve Cardenas' 'Blue Has a Range' Is Steeped in Blues Tradition and Expressed with Elegance

Jazz guitarist Steve Cardenas' Blue Has a Range sports modern but vintage jazz guitar at the center of a gorgeously balanced group of composer and players.

Music

Joshua Redman, Brad Mehldau, Christian McBride, and Brian Blade Come 'RoundAgain'

Joshua Redman's 1994 quartet of young jazz lions reunites as contemporary masters on RoundAgain.

Music

Tatsuya Nakatani and Shane Parish Replace Form with Risk on 'Interactivity'

The more any notions of preconceived musicality are flicked to the curb, the more absorbing Tatsuya Nakatani and Shane Parish's Interactivity gets.

Music

Rising Young Jazz Pianist Micah Thomas Debuts with 'Tide'

Micah Thomas' Tide is the debut of a young jazz pianist who is comfortable and fluent in a "new mainstream": abstraction as well as tonality, freedom as well as technical complexity.

Music

Laura Nyro's "Save the Country" Calls Out from the Past

Laura Nyro, a witchy, queer, ethnic Russian Jew, died young, but her non-conformist anthem, "Save the Country", carries forth to these troubled times.

Music

Sax Player Rudresh Mahanthappa Channels Charlie Parker's Super Powers

On the release of his latest, Hero Trio, saxophonist Rudresh Mahanthappa records his first session of covers, playing jazz standards and hip-pop with a fabulous trio featuring bassist François Moutin and drummer Rudy Royston.

Music

Threadbare Elevate Rock and Jazz on the Complex 'Silver Dollar'

Atonal free jazz trio Threadbare use unique instrumentation and a love of multiple musical styles on their fascinating new album, Silver Dollar.

Music

Walter Smith III and Matthew Stevens Make New Jazz So Easy to Love on 'In Common 2'

Two of the top players in modern jazz make the second in a sequence of quintet recordings that presents jazz as unusually easy to love even as it maintains modern complexity.

Music

John Scofield Renews the Jazz Guitar Trio on 'Swallow Tales'

The jazz guitar trio is a classic format, and John Scofield, Steve Swallow, and Bill Stewart are as well-equipped to venerate it and renew it a bit on Swallow Tales.

Music

Ambrose Akinmusire Muses 'on the tender spot of every calloused moment'

The most notable trumpet player in jazz today, Ambrose Akinmusire, creates a major recording focusing on his quartet leaping from mode to mode.

Music

Dave Douglas Pays Tribute to Jazz Legend Dizzy Gillespie on 'Dizzy Atmosphere'

Jazz trumpeter and composer Dave Douglas has constructed a tribute to Dizzy Gillespie that gives his young band as much voice as possible, with two reinterpretations of Dizzy classics and seven originals.

Music

Michael Olatuja Cooks Up Some "Lagos Pepper Soup" with Angélique Kidjo (premiere)

Bassist Michael Olatuja and legend Angélique Kidjo celebrate life and culture on "Lagos Pepper Soup".

Music

The James Carney Sextet Remain Quietly Essential on 'Pure Heart'

Jazz pianist and composer James Carney returns with a session featuring sparkling collective improvisation and inventive composition.

Music

Groupe RTD Showcase Intercontinental Flows on 'The Dancing Devils of Djibouti'

The history and geography of Djibouti come through richly in Groupe RTD's sound, a cosmopolitan blend of East Africa, the Arab world, ports along the Indian Ocean, and the current historical moment of increasing globalization.

Music

Jazz's Aaron Parks Explores on 'Little Big II: Dreams of a Mechanical Man'

Jazz pianist Aaron Parks' grooving but exploratory quartet returns for a second recording after being on the road, and it's stunning.

Music

"Without Us? There's No Music": An Interview With Raul Midón

Raul Midón discusses the fate of the art in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. "This is going to shake things up in ways that could be very positive. Especially for artists," he says.

Music

12 Essential Performances from New Orleans' Piano "Professors"

New Orleans music is renowned for its piano players. Here's a dozen jams from great Crescent City keyboardists, past and present, and a little something extra.

Music

Esperanza Spalding and Fred Hersch Are 'Live at the Village Vanguard' to Raise Money for Musicians

Esperanza Spalding and Fred Hersch release a live recording from a 2018 show to raise money for a good cause: other jazz musicians.

Music

Archie Shepp, Raw Poetic, and Damu the Fudgemunk Enlighten and Enliven with 'Ocean Bridges'

Ocean Bridges is proof that genre crossovers can sound organic, and that the term "crossover" doesn't have to come loaded with gimmicky connotations. Maybe we're headed for a world in which genres are so fluid that the term is dropped altogether from the cultural lexicon.

Music

Kurt Elling and Danilo Pérez Prove 'Secrets Are the Best Stories'

Kurt Elling's collaboration with pianist Danilo Pérez features impressionistic and daring playing and poetic lyrics, making it one of the highlights of a brilliant jazz vocal career.

Music

'Underground London' Dazzles with Its Scope and Anti-Establishment Music

Cherry Red issues a gargantuan collection of anti-establishment music associated with the 1960s London counterculture, a movement which challenged the norms and conventions of mainstream society by drinking from the well of psychedelia, free jazz, Beat poetry, musique concrete, electronics, and minimalism.

Music

Matthew Shipp's 'The Piano Equation' Will Stand the Test of Time

Matthew Shipp's The Piano Equation is a fully improvised solo piano recital to stand the test of time, sitting in the realm where mathematics and magic collide.

Music

NIIKA Makes a Striking, Multifaceted Full-Length Debut with 'Close But Not Too Close'

The Uzbekistan-born, Chicago-raised NIIKA combines art-pop and exotic jazz stylings to create a deeply rewarding listening experience on Close But Not Too Close.

Music

Nat King Cole Says to 'Straighten Up and Fly Right'

Straighten Up and Fly Right reveals Nat King Cole's talents as a pianist and bandleader.

Music

The Ruthie Foster Big Band Swings the Best Live Record of the Year So Far

Featuring several originals paired with timeless covers, Live at the Paramount finds the Ruthie Foster Big Band bringing the house down.

Music

Jazz Vocalist Luciana Souza Beguiles on 'Storytellers'

In arranger Vince Mendoza and the WDR Big Band, singer Luciana Souza has partners who understand that it's important she beguile rather than batter.

Music

The Best Jazz Albums of 2010

Jazz was working all the angles in 2010. Is there any other genre that has as much range -- from solo instruments to big bands, from instrumental to vocal, from European musicians to both North and South Americans, from truly pretty music to raucously avant-garde "noise"?

Music

Cassowary Debuts with a Jazz-Funk Gem

After debuting on a 2015 record by childhood friend Earl Sweatshirt, Cassowary merges jazz, funk, soul, and hip-hop on his self-titled debut album and creates a jazz-funk gem.

Music

Liberty Ellman's 'Last Desert' Is Unafraid to Charm You and Challenge You

Guitarist Liberty Ellman's compositions for this brilliant sextet on Last Desert demand that you pay careful attention, but not that you tolerate harsh tonalities.

Music

Novelty and Identity: An Interview With Colin Stetson

Colin Stetson discusses his process for scoring film and artistic satisfaction it gives him. "I get to invent a new array of solutions with novelty and identity. I hope the music has not existed in the particular guise and aesthetic before that."

Music

'Rejoice' with Tony Allen and Hugh Masekela

This long-delayed collaboration by two African master musicians is an occasion for jubilation. Rejoice is a posthumous reminder of what Hugh Masekela at his best could deliver and of the now 80-year-old Tony Allen's amazing vitality.

Music

Avishai Cohen Mixes Acid-Psych, Ambiance, and Smoky Jazz on 'Big Vicious'

Avishai Cohen's Big Vicious offers a stunning take on Massive Attack's "Teardrop" among other highlights on an album that feels like a jazz version of post-rock.

Music

Reverso Fuse Jazz, Improvisation, and European Art Music on 'The Melodic Line'

An unlikely trio of trombone, cello, and piano fuses jazz, creative improvised music, and European art music without sounding cobbled together. Reverso are Vincent Courtois, Ryan Keberle, and Frank Woeste.

Reviews
Collapse Expand Reviews

Features
Collapse Expand Features
PM Picks
Collapse Expand Pm Picks

© 1999-2020 PopMatters.com. All rights reserved.
PopMatters is wholly independent, women-owned and operated.