In the autumn of 2016, word began to spread around New Orleans that an extraordinary new collective had begun to record an album and were starting to perform in the premier venues in the city. The personnel? Brad Webb on drums, Matt Booth on bass, and Oscar Rossignoli on piano. All of them compose for the group, and with the particular musical personalities of the group foremost in mind – an approach that has thrilled locals and will likely soon reach audiences both nationally and internationally.
Street Blues is a beautifully produced album that is a fantastic listening experience. Full of great original songs and choice covers. A perfect vehicle for Simon's clever writing, soulful singing and killer modern blues guitar playing.
Cuban born pianist Alfredo Rodrguez literally lived his music while in his native land. Coming to the United States has given Rodriguez a new perspective and a second chance at creativity that few artists are smart enough to embrace on the first go-round. The Invasion Parade celebrates different styles of Cuban music seldom recorded in the United States along with a wonderful lineup of musicians including a nice cameo from Esperanza Spalding.
Old hand Peter Neumann recorded Mozart's Missa Solemnis KV 337 once before. Neumann is an authenticist that uses a period band. This recording is twice as good as the one he made previously, a rendition that included the organ sonata KV 336 between the Gloria and Credo sections, as he has done here.
The hauntingly beautiful voice of countertenor Carlos Mena is featured here on the Mirare début of the Disfonik Orchestra. The group’s music blends jazz and classical with other influences to produce a sound that is both unique and captivating. Under the Shadow includes a selection of some of the most beautiful works in the classical repertoire, delicately arranged for jazz band.
If the 12" single of Herb Alpert's "Rise" hadn't taken over the charts the way it did back in 1979, one wonders if anyone would have gotten around to checking out the Tijuana Brass, or if Alpert would have gone down in the books as the guy who had a number one with a Burt Bacharach tune ("This Guy's in Love with You"). Instead, the cut energized the entire dance club generation, with DJs looking for new grooves, and it even ended up being used by Sean "Puffy" Combs on the Notorious B.I.G.'s Hypnotise, albeit in a drastically re-morphed form.
Naturally, the wild success of "Rise" would lead anyone to the temptation of repeating oneself, and at first, this follow-up LP does plenty of that, grafting the same slow, hand-clapping beat onto several numbers. But Alpert won't sit still for long, and he comes through with some startling things that wake up the record midway through. The funky, percolating party beat of "Red Hot" starts the engine, which is pushed to an electrifying degree by the sequencer-driven, Echoplexed, hard-charging title track, where we hear Alpert's distinctive horn through a metallic electronic buffer. The most amazing track is the finale, "The Factory," a terrifying, relentlessly grinding depiction of a soulless foundry that must have shocked sedate former TJB fans who bought this album on a lark, expecting happy music from the past.
Legendary jazz greats Branford Marsalis and Kurt Elling collaborate for the first time on a full album, Upward Spiral. They ve been talking for a while about making a record together, and finally at the end of 2015 it all came together. They found time to play the new material in the New Orleans Snug Harbor club for four days and then recorded a variety of songs in the studio, all chosen because of their melodic richness and musical quality. Their versions of the chosen material are simply incredible, as the musicality of Branford and Kurt and their deep understanding of these songs shows through immediately.