New Jazz Adds – 6/17/2015

New Jazz Adds – 6/17/2015

Aguanko – Invisible (Self-produced): Afro-Cuban jazz band based in Michigan features nine original pieces by conga player and group leader Alberto Nacif. In addition to Nacif, Aguanko features Jose “Pepe” Espinoza (timbales, guiro, bongo bays), Carlos Mena (bass), Wesley Reynoso (piano), Russell Miller (sax, flute), Christopher Smith (trombone), Anthony Stanco (trumpet), with guests Rick Roe (piano), Marcus Belgrave (trumpet), Robert Hurst (bass), and Alberto Alberto Pina (vocal). A new taste of Cuban son-salsa. Click here for a sample.

Kevin Bachelder & Jason Lee Bruns – Cherry Avenue (Panout): Vocalist Kevin Bachelder teams up with drummer Jason Lee Bruns to present this batch of mostly classics like Autumn Leaves” and an unusual take on “Send In The Clowns” with some surprises like Jobim’s “Waters Of March” and an interesting arrangement of Lennon’s “Dear Prudence”.  There’s also a Bachelder original (“It Didn’t Work Out That Way”). Supporting musicians include Daniel Szabo (p), Angelo Metz (g), Ron Blake (trumpet, flugelhorn), Kim Richmond (sax, clarinet), Jacques Voyemant (trombone), Edwin Livingston (b), and Brandon Fields (sax).  Click here for an introduction to this disc.

The Bad Plus Joshua Redman – The Bad Plus Joshua Redman (Nonesuch): Reid Anderson (b), Ethan Iverson (p) and David King (d) are back with their eleventh release and, just for some added inventiveness, recruited Joshua Redman (tenor sax) to join them in their genre-bending quest to expand the all encompassing reach of jazz. In addition to his terrific playing, Redman also contributed two compositions to this release of nine originals. The opening song, “As The Moment Slips Away”, is a delightful sonic disintegration, but even when employing that technique, this band’s music flows and Redman is a perfect match.  Sometimes whimsical, sometimes pensive, sometimes  crazy, but what a delightful adventure!  Click here for a live version of one of the songs on this disc.

Tim Berne’s Snakeoil – You’ve Been Watching Me (ECM): Berne continues his quest to balance composed music with improvisation and individual experimentation.  Snakeoil has been a fairly stable group: Berne on alto sax, Oscar Noriega (clarinet, bass clarinet), Ryan Ferreira (guitar), Mat Mitchell (piano, electronics), and Ches Smith (drums, vibes, percussion). Some say this is Berne’s most successful recording, acknowledging that his earlier works are more difficult listening than this disc.  My suggestion is to approach it with open ears and mind. It can be difficult, but the parts also blend at times and that is quite rewarding. Click here for a live performance of a song on this disc.

Boilermaker Jazz Band – Slipped Disc (Self-produced): Here’s a celebration of the many aspects and grooves laid down by Benny Goodman and his various bands. The Boilermaker Jazz Band features Paul Consentino (clarinet), Jeff Bush (trombone), Eric Emmons (guitar), Jeff Lashway (piano), Ernest McCarty (bass), Ricahrd Strong (drums) and Jennifer McNulty (vox). They do a nice job of reminding us how many great tunes Goodman et. al. recorded.  It could serve as a very good introduction, but raises the question “Why not check out the original recordings?”  You’ll have to decide for yourself. Click here for a sample from this disc.

Joshua Breakstone – 2nd Avenue: The Return of the Cello-Quartet (Capri): Nice grouping on this one with Breakstone on guitar, Lisle Atkinson on bass, Andy Watson on drums, and Mike Richmond on plucked cello.  Of the none tunes, Atkinson contributes “Hit It” and Breakstone contributes “2nd Ave: Blues For Imahori” and the rest are compositions from Lee Konitz, Cannonball Adderley, and Dexter Gordon on the jazz side and a few from the pop side.  Breakstone has recorded prolifically over the years and is well-respected for his flowing guitar lines and his beautiful chording…and this is a terrific session! Click here for an earlier live performance of a song from this disc.

Chicago Reed Quartet – Western Automatic (Aerophonic): Fans of the World Saxophone Quintet in their “fired up, improvisionary” days, this is a recording for you.  The Chicago Reed Quartet is on that same intense pathway.  The group is made up of Nick Mazzarella (alto sax), Dave Rempis (alto, tenor, bari), Mars Williams (sopranino, soprano, alto, tenor) and Ken Vandermark (clarinet, bass clarinet, tenor & baritone sax) and they reside on the outer edge. By happenstance, they are representative of four different “generations” given that when ordered by birth dates there is a ten year gap between the youngest to the next oldest, etc. What brought them together is their shared fascination with this intense musical style. Click here to go to their label page and scroll down.  I would suggest trying “Remnant” first as it is more melodic and less intense than “Burn Unit”.  

Roger Davidson Trio – Live at Caffe Vivaldi, Volume 2 (Soundbrush): Live performances of original Brazilian Jazz compositions by Roger Davidson (piano) with David Finck and Pablo Aslan alternating on bass and Adriano Santos on drums. The only exception to the originals is Jobim’s “Garota de Ipanema”.  Surely this was a very nice evening for musicians and patrons alike.  Click here for a sample.

Scott Hamilton – Plays Julie Styne (Blue Duchess): Scott “Mr. Smooth” Hamilton celebrates the compositions of Jule Styne from 1927’s “Sunday” (originally recorded by Jean Goldkette’s Orchestra) to 1964’s “People”, a mega-hit for Barbra Streisand. Tim Ray (piano), Dave Zinno (bass), and Jim Gwin (drums) support Hamilton’s flowing tenor sax throughout and Fred Bates adds his guitar on one song. A mellow and swinging affair.  Click here for a live sample of Hamilton’s playing.  Note: This song is not on the above disc.

Steve Kaldestad – New York Afternoon (Cellar Live): Mellow and supple tenor sax courtesy of Steve Kaldestad and band mates Renee Rosnes (piano), Peter Washington (bass), and Lewis Nash (drums).  This performance was recorded live in March, 2014.  Kaldestad composed one and Rosnes two of the songs preformed at this gig, while the rest focus on compositions by Joe Henderson and Buddy Montgomery and some tasty Latin grooves.  The band is tight and swinging throughout, making for a nice performance. Click here for a sample from Kaldestad’s previous disc.

Halie Loren – Butterfly Blue (Justin’ Time): Sultry-voiced Loren offers a dozen vocals on this combination of jazz, pop and original songs.  Her voice is sweet and breathy and both her song choice and instrumental support work well together. Most songs feature piano (Matt Treder),with occasional guitar (Daniel Gallo or William Seiji Marsh), sax or clarinet (David Larsen) and a quiet rhythm section composed of Mark Schneider (bass) and Brian West (drums).  Songs vary from originals written by Loren to classics like “Stormy Weather” and “I’ve Got You Under My Skin” to Horace Silver’s “Peace”.  Click here for a live version of a song on this disc.

Gary Peacock Trio – Now This (ECM): The trio features bassist Gary Peacock, pianist Marc Copland and drummer Joey Baron presenting eleven compositions, of which ten are originals by members of the trio.  The cover photo appears to be a “hubble” photo or facsimile and it represents to music well – expansive, “airy”, and beautiful.   Click here for a sample from this disc.

Kenny Werner – The Melody (Pirouet): Werner is a distinguished composer and pianist with several recordings and artistic awards to his credit.  This disc features Werner with support from Johannes Weidenmueller on bass and Ari Hoenig on drums. Four of the seven tunes are Werner compositions, while the remainder were composed by Tom Jones & Harvey Schmidt, John Coltrane, and Dave Brubeck.  Not surprisingly, the performances are centered on “the melody” and some very tasty rhythmic changes as some of the songs morph into a somewhat different form.  The melodic form is always the primary element. Nice swinging music. Click here for a live performance by Werner.  Note: This song is not on the above disc.




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