Photo by Jamal Ahmed
Loop 2.4.3 have a track that is here to blow up your mind dome and when you hear it, you will know exactly why. This is called “Out To War” and the way people are running around in the world, it may seem everyone is out to or for war. Loop 2.4.3 is from the mindset of Thomas Kozumplik and if you were curious about things, begin here. This is taken from his album Time-Machine_Music, my review of which can be read by clicking here. You should pick up through Amazon.com by clicking the cover below.
Aut Records described this album by the Berlin Soundpainting Orchestra this way:
“Led by soundpainter and pianist Hada Benedito, the Berlin Soundpainting Orchestra consists of 16 experimental musicians, improvisers and composers, all coming from different backgrounds and nationalities. Their live composed works could be described as a trip of obscure and colourful images, an expansive way of traveling among improvisation and avant-garde music beyond contemporary jazz..”
What does that exactly all mean? It’s improvisational, it’s spontaneous and like a good amount of music, it is unpredictable. The first thing I thought of was John Zorn, when he had his Cobra project and all of the musicians involved play what they had to be played by looking at cue cards with anything from numbers to symbols and gibberish, each describing what they are to do. In a way, you could say the Berlin Soundpainting Orchestra are creating their own language by what they’re seeing, or what they’re saying, or what they’re feeling. It’s fun to hear too because while it may sound like some kind of Ornette Coleman jam session, it is going somewhere if you pay attention. It is neither jazz or classical, it could easily be Pink Floyd in Atom Heart Mother mode but fans of avant-garde classical or jazz may consider that comparison an insult. Nonetheless, it is what I hear and I could only image what this would sound like in a live setting. There are two people who contribute dialogie to this album, somewhat helping the listener out from point A to point B, imagine if Laurie Anderson came into a room and decided to split herself in two. Parts of this reminded if of Andrew Poppy’s wonderful album The Beating Of Wings, as I could hear a few similarities here and there. I hope the “Orchestra” will do more albums in the years, decades, and perhaps centuries to come.
With a new album featuring songs composed completely by its leader, The Danny Green Trio offer a bit of wonderful jazz with a nice touch of attitude (call it swagger if you will) with Altered Narratives (OA2). Green blesses his piano with helo from drummer Julien Cantelm and bassist Justin Grinnell and together they create a vibe that is warm to the touch and quite beautiful, if not elegant, to hear. Everything was nicely put together with help from producer Matt Pierson and together they play their heart and souls together as one while allowing each other to get deeper into what they’re doing, slightly becoming confident in their own playing and contributions while maintaining they are united for one common cause. The cause is a good one. Highlights include “Friday At The Thursday Club”, “Serious Fun” and the album opener, “Chatter From All Sides”.
Taking Flight (Bimperl Entertainment) couldn’t be a more appropriate title for the latest release from The Tony Lustig Quintet, who is backed on this album with Ulysses Owens, Ben Williams, Samora Pinderhughes, and Michael Dease. Lustig’s instrument is the saxophone, in this case the baritone saxophone and he plays that in a way sounds like some of the best saxophonists around, including Eric Leeds. The musicianship here is brilliant and when they want to get deep into a blues mode (as they do with “Fraytown”), you can imagine yourself walking into a nightclub at 2:45am and making it out at 7:22am. All songs on this are Lustig originals and I hope these songs will become part of everyone’s jazz songbook in the years and decades to come.
It would be too easy to simply call Sari Kessler a jazz singer for her voice on Do Right (self-released) shows that she is something that is quite simple: a great singer, period. Nothing wrong with that and by her album beginning with a cover of Burt Bacharach’s “Walk On By”, you get to hear what she is capable of doing without any theatrics, without stunts, without ego. Her own”My Empty Bed Blues” is a song that will hopefully be covered and performed in the years and generations to come but in order to know where she came from, you have to hear her grace and finesse here, which includes nice renditions of Duke Ellington’s “The Gal From Joe’s” and Bobby Hebb’s “Sunny”, the latter a song I can never get enough of regardless of who does it. What is amazing is this sounds like music who has been doing this for all of her life and yet this is her debut album. It’s very hard to believe this is her very first effort but this will make me want to know what she has around the corner.
A new 37 minute mix of excellent funk, soul, and jazz has been blended together by DJ Manipulator in something he calls the Third Eye Vision Mix and true to its subtitle, it is an all vinyl mix, straight out of the crates. You can download it for free from the Soundcloud page while supplies last or directly from Mediafire.
If you are looking for some fine and chic vocal jazz, please try out “But Beautiful”, the latest song from Laura Perlman. This is taken from the pianists’ latest album on Miles High Records called Precious Moments, which also features drummer Loe La Barbera, pianist Bill Cunliffe, bassist Christ Colangelo, and vibraphonist Mark Sherman. Her album is available from Amazon.com by clicking the cover below.
Mike Dillon has a brand new albu due out before the end of the month, and I mean this month of April 2016. It’s called Functioning Broke (The Royal Potato Family) and some of the songs recorded for it may be tempting enough to pre-order immediately. Along with a string of originals, how about covers of Neil Young’s “The Needle & The Damage Done” and Martin Denny’s “The Enchanted Sea”? The album will also focus on songs by Elliott Smith so if you’ve loved what he has done over the years, you’ll want to begin exploring again. The album can be pre-ordered from Amazon.com by clicking the cover below.
On the outside, Toxydoll reminds me of the kind of band that listened to way too much Mr. Bungle and said “fuck it, let’s do things our own way and turn our music into a carnival”. The group consists of Vicent Doménech, Alberto Cavenati, Bob Meanza, and Olga Nosova and with Bullsheep (Aut) they go out of their way to reach the edge and find pleasure in falling off, exploring their surroundings and going for anything and everything to make their music not sound like anyone else. It can be tribal at times, it can be beautifully harmonic, then other times they incorporate thick guitar riffs and come off as incredible spastic. It sounds like a massive organization going in for the kill but it’s just four guys playing great jazz that is on the verge of exploding. The difference is that they know how far to go and never push themselves too much, just traveling and making that journey part of their sonic experience. Tempos, textures, rhythms and everything else go back and forth, over and under as well as sideways down, leaving the listener unable to comprehend where they’ll be going next. In other words, for those who want their jazz on the very adventurous side.
Pianist Darrell Grant has created The Territory (PJCE), a nine-part movement that touches on Earth, the people on and within it and the interaction between everything that is able to make everyone survive as best as possible. At least that’s the way I interpret this and while Grant is the center of this entire project, everyone in the band blends beautifully in carrying the message and mission forward so we’re able to make sense of everything that’s going on. By listening to this, it’s a way to reflect on our own surroundings and figure out what is good or what went wrong, and to question if we’re able to find a way to make things right, if there is right a think as right. What also makes this album work is having drummer Brian Blade in this, recorded live in Portland, Oregon three years ago. This is something that could or should be performed around the world for all to hear so its message coudl be carried on for today’s generation, in the hopes of it going on for many years to come, in an Ellingonian manner. A wonderful piece of work.