Ingebrigt Håker Flaten reminds us that jazz is the musical equivalent of a dark star, a musical black hole, absorbing all musical energy and classifications. The Norwegian-born bassist-turned Austin, TX resident assembled a multi-genre sextet under the uncategorizable name The Young Mothers. Sure, let's not call this jazz, because it would alienate 99% of fans. But jazz, in truth, it is.
French countertenor Philippe Jaroussky, whose honey-sweet voice perhaps remains the best introduction to the countertenor voice for the skeptical, attempts something new with the collection of gorgeous and generally underrated Vivaldi works. It might, therefore, not be perfectly appropriate as an introduction to Jaroussky, but it's a daring and altogether engrossing project. The collection is accurately billed as a group of sacred works for alto, which makes it a surprising attempt for : his voice corresponds most closely to a mezzo-soprano range, and he has in the past taken on full-scale operatic arias where his voice blooms into a colorful and attractive top. Here he deliberately forbids himself that part of his vocal repertoire, even in faster, more athletic pieces that would seem to permit it. Everything is kept at a very low temperature. It's a risky course, but several things come together to make it work, and work in a big way. One is the presence of Jaroussky's handpicked Ensemble Artaserse, which responds to the subtlety of his approach with a sensitivity that would be worth the price of admission in itself.
Behemoth is a Polish blackened death metal band from Gdańsk. They are considered to have played an important role in establishing the Polish extreme metal underground, alongside bands such as Vader, Decapitated, Vesania and Hate. Over the years Behemoth has moved from traditional black metal into blackened death metal and then into modern death metal with each consecutive release. Until the late 1990s, the band played a traditional black metal style with heathen lyrical content, but soon changed to that of occult and thelemic themes written by their lead vocalist Nergal and Krzysztof Azarewicz. With the 1999 release of Satanica, the band demonstrated their presence in the death metal scene, while retaining their own signature style characterized by the drum work of Inferno, multi-layered vocals and Middle-Eastern influences.