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.
After a much celebrated appearance by Adam Baldych at the 2011 Berlin Jazzfest, critic Ulrich Olshausen raved in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper: "He has, without doubt, the greatest technique of any jazz violinist alive today. We can expect everything of him". High praise for a musician of just 26 years of age, and at the same time only fitting for a man who has been considered a prodigy in his native Poland for many years already. He discovered the violin at the age of 11, and jazz at 13; the music gave him the freedom of expression he was looking for, and at 16 he started his international career. After completing his jazz studies at the Katowice Academy with distinction, he was awarded a scholarship to Berklee College of Music in Boston.
Based in São Paulo, Metá Metá have played a key role in the city’s thriving experimental music scene, mixing samba and Afro-Brazilian candomblé with jazz and rock. Now they have added north African influences, inspired by visits to Morocco, in an album that constantly changes style and pace – often in the same song. Opener Três Amigos sets the mood, starting as an atmospheric piece with an Arabic edge and relaxed vocals by Juçara Marçal, before switching to a furious blitz of sound by saxophonist Thiago França and guitarist Kiko Dinucci, who played a key role in an extraordinary recent album from Elza Soares. Elsewhere, the songs vary from the cheerful and breezy Toque Certeiro (featuring scat vocals from Marçal that have the easy charm of Joyce Moreno) to passages that sound like an angry Brazilian post-punk thrash, influenced by their country’s political crisis.
As in the successful volumes 1-3 this is a very exciting recording, featuring the bassoon as you never heard before! The 54th release in the Vivaldi Edition features a selection of the finest works for bassoon ever composed, regardless of the instrument, this is a complete view of Vivaldi’s universe, performed by a true genius of baroque music. With each CD Azzolini proves himself to be an artist of endless immagination and virtuosity. With each new recording he surpasses the one before.
The third studio meeting in nearly 17 years between Medeski, Martin & Wood and guitarist John Scofield has no easy referent to their earlier recordings – purposely. This quartet sounds like a real band on Juice, which is a mixed blessing. The positive aspect is that this longtime collaboration creates near instinctive communication. This is a much more inside date, though the rhythmic interplay between bassist Chris Wood and drummer Billy Martin is outstanding throughout.