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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"?

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Music

For Ben Goldberg It's a 'Good Day for Cloud Fishing'

Composer and clarinetist Ben Goldberg writes tunes inspired by the poetry of Dean Young for a shimmering trio, which in turn inspired new poems.

Music

Wilco Builds 'Ode to Joy' on Durable Structures Worthy of Focus

Wilco's Ode to Joy shows a band invigorated by studio flourishes and unexpected complications.

Music

The Best Jazz of 2018

The definition of "jazz" has never been broader, and the music has never been brighter. Two PopMatters critics pick their favorites in four modern jazz categories.

Justin Cober-Lake and Will Layman
Music

The New Nels Cline 4 Sinks a Putt on 'Currents, Constellations'

Nels Cline used to go nuts on all of us. Now he's measuring things out more carefully.

Interviews

Get in the Ring: Mike Watt Talks 'Ring Spiel '95'

In 1995, Mike Watt released his first solo album and embarked on a tour with some talented, famous and supportive friends. He looks back on that time now with fondness but says that, at first, he wasn't sure what the future would bring.

Interviews

"I Had to Step Up My Game": An Interview with Nels Cline of Wilco

In a candid interview with PopMatters, Nels Cline discusses his new double album, why it took a quarter of a century to come to fruition, and his role in the ever-evolving Wilco.

Music

Nels Cline: Lovers

The unclassifiable guitar legend and Wilco secret weapon finally releases the album he's been working on for 25 years, and it's definitely worth the wait.

Music

Wilco: Star Wars

Saying "What's more fun than a surprise?" Wilco drops their shortest, barest album in their career, and it feels fresh and new.

Music

RBMA - A Night of Round Robin Duets (Photos) & Conversation with D'Angelo (Video)

The Red Bull Music Academy brings unique performances, parties and conversations to New York for a full month since last May. Enjoy photos from the Round Robin and video from a conversation with D'Angelo.

Music

Carla Bozulich: Boy

Boy sounds like nothing other than Bozulich’s own twisty back catalog, a culmination of a career spent distorting punk rock and country and the blues into exciting new shapes.

Music

Nels Cline / Elliott Sharp: Open the Door

Originally recorded in 1999, this interesting, thorny guitar-duo record is finally seeing the light of day.

Music

Ben Goldberg: Subatomic Particle Homesick Blues / Unfold Ordinary Mind

The John Zorn of the clarinet has two surprises that you are going to like -- no, love.

Music

The Jeff Gauthier Goatette: Open Source

Cryptogramophone founder Jeff Gauthier and his Goatette carry on, business as usual. As usual, business is good.

Events

Wilco + Nick Lowe: 22 September 2011 - New York

The threat of rain didn't prevent Wilco from playing to a sold-out crowd in Central Park last Thursday night.

Music

Danny Frankel: The Interplanetary Note/Beat Conference

Nearly everyone wants Danny Frankel to play drums on their albums. As a solo artist, he lets his friends do the talking.

Music

Nels Cline/Tim Berne/Jim Black: The Veil

BB&C is Tim Berne, Jim Black and Nels Cline. Not beef, bacon and cheddar.

Music

If By Yes: Salt on Sea Glass

If By Yes is a sort of alternative rock supergroup featuring members from the now defunct That Dog and Cibo Matto, with special guest turns from David Byrne and Wilco guitarist Nels Cline.

Music

Nels Cline: Dirty Baby

Just when I thought Nels Cline couldn't get any more challenging or confrontational, he goes and makes an album like this.

Events

Wilco: 9.April.2010 - Hartford

Wilco pulled out one of their classic, epic, three-hour sets in Hartford, CT.

Zach Schonfeld
Music

Wilco: 19 October 2009 - UIC Pavilion, Chicago

Words and Pictures by Allison Taich

Music

Nels Cline: Coward / Alex Cline: Continuation

The drum-and-guitar playing brothers release simultaneous solo projects on the great West Coast jazz label.

Music

Mirror Twins: Conversations with Nels and Alex Cline

Although their careers have some similarities, the twin composers and songwriters aren't as similar as it seems, covering everything from the monastic to the chaotic.

Music

The Best Jazz of 2008

More than ever, the best jazz is coming from small labels, and more than ever the best draws a decent slice from the dynamics of rock and pop music without itself being a commercial venture.

Music

The Jeff Gauthier Goatette: House of Return

The founder of Cryptogramophone Records returns with his genre-defying jazz band, featuring Nels and Alex Cline.

Music

Various Artists: Assemblage 1998-2008

Cryptogramophone's triumphant 2-CD retrospective is highly listenable, accessible, and immensely engaging. What is the opposite of under the radar? Cryptogramophone is headed there.

Music

Steven Bernstein: Diaspora Suite

The fourth of the trumpeter's ingenious transformations of Jewish music, this gorgeous mass of guitars, horns and drums fuses Bitches Brew to the synagogue.

Music

Nels Cline: New Monastery

Underground PoMo avant shenanigans put an extra shine on some timeless left-field jazz classics.

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