Roberto Rodriguez’s dynamic blending of Cuban music with the Jewish tradition has produced some of the most popular and best selling CDs on the Radical Jewish series. Here he turns his brilliant arranging skills and fabulous all-star ensemble to nine beautiful melodies from Zorn’s lyrical Book of Angels. Recorded in Israel with some of the strongest musicians out of the exciting Israeli music scene the music is at once familiar and surprising, touching on traditions while bringing them into the 21st century with imagination, wit and a passionate creativity.
The long awaited follow-up to Borah Bergman’s critically acclaimed solo recording Meditations for Piano takes his lyrical cross hands contrapuntal technique into the dynamic context of the classic piano trio. Rich and soulful, this is Borah at his most thoughtful, supported by a fabulous rhythm section and performing music very close to his heart. Influenced by the exotic melismas of cantorial singing, the counterpoint of Bach and the harmonic beauty of Alban Berg and Bill Evans, Borah forges a new language of joy and sadness, firmly rooted in the Jewish tradition. John Zorn guests on one track.
This is the Big Band Masada project you’ve been waiting for. Led by composers Sam Eastmond and Nikki Franklin, The SPIKE Orchestra is a large ensemble that draws on a wide range of influences including Duke Ellington, Frank Zappa, Carl Stalling, Zorn and more. Melding jazz, rock, klezmer, cartoon and the avant-garde into a compelling and cohesive vision, this new Angels installment is one of the most imaginative and manic masterpieces in the whole series. An outrageous and explosive swinger that will thrill even the most hardened skeptic. Essential.
Nova Express is one of Zorn’s most dynamic and sensitive ensembles: an MJQ-tinged quartet featuring piano, vibraphone, bass and drums. For their first foray into the world of Masada, they are joined by the ever-popular Brazilian percussionist Cyro Baptista to create a fabulous program of space-age bachelor pad music for the 21st century. Relaxing and unique instrumental music performed by an all-star quintet of musical masters touching upon the exotic language of The Dreamers, Les Baxter, Martin Denny, Bert Kaempfert, Afro-Cuban bop and more.
Formed in 1997, The Cracow Klezmer Band is a phenomena. Through their spectacular combination of impeccable musicianship, imaginative arrangements and passionate performances they have been universally acclaimed by audiences and critics alike, developing into one of the most successful and exciting acoustic groups in the world. Here they are joined by the lush sound of strings, as Bester turns his prodigious arranging skills to eight new songs from Zorn’s fabulous and varied Book of Angels. Also featuring the Cracow String Quartet this is their best CD to date.
Recorded in 1993, Kristallnacht is Zorn's most powerful and unforgettable composition. This premiere work of Radical Jewish Culture features a virtuoso ensemble of creative Jewish musicians. Seven movements tell the story of the Jewish experience, survival through the Holocaust, the building of a Jewish state, diaspora Jewry and its attraction and resistance to assimilation, the rise of Jewish nationalism and the ultimate problems of fanatical religious fundamentalism. Seemlessly combining 12 tone classical composition, improvisation, noise and klezmer, this is a work not to be missed by anyone interested in new trends in modern music.
Born in Tel Aviv, multi-instrumentalist Koby Israelite has been playing music since the age of nine. Conservatory trained on piano and keyboards, he was drawn to punk and heavy metal as a teenager, switched to drums and then got turned on to Jazz, World Music and the Downtown Scene. For his third Tzadik CD, this tireless and ever creative musical spirit turns his hand to the complex lyricism of Zorn’s complex Book of Angels. Interpreting tunes handpicked by Zorn himself, Koby mixes in everything he knows, including metal, jazz, gypsy and klezmer with stylish flair and great virtuosity. Naked City, Zappa, Taraf de Haidouks and Fantomas all rolled into one, this is an amazing orchestral achievement by an exciting young musical adventurer.
Working together since 1978, the partnership of Zorn and Frith is one of the most enduring musical partnerships in the downtown scene. Their periodic duo concerts have always been special events in themselves, but when it happens in celebration of Zorn's 50th Birthday, it takes on even greater meaning. Two masters of improvisation meet head to head in the redhot crucible of Tonic for an hour of telepathic communication and exploration, and you are there.
A spectacular presentation of eleven new compositions from Zorn’s Book of Angels by two passionate virtuosos whose work together is never less than perfection itself. Contextualizing the music into a classical recital for violin and piano, this is the chamber music of the future. Exciting and breathtaking, Mark and Sylvie have put together a program filled with imagination, lyricism and an intense energy. New Jewish music by one of the greatest violin/piano pairings ever. This is a whole new all-encompassing direction for classical music.
From its first manic blast, it's clear that Masada, Vol. 10: Yod is going to be one of John Zorn and company's wildest, most confident works. It's also one of the most accessible, though that's hardly a safe recommendation: like all of the Masada series' works, Yod is not a friendly listen. The middle section of the album, though, with its gentle, hypnotic pace, offers a reprieve from the intensity of the other compositions. What continues to impress in this, their tenth release, is the group's relentless energy and the sheer brilliance of their interplay. The incredibly visceral soloing of Zorn and Dave Douglas, the mesmerizing, exotic pulse: all are the trademarks of one of jazz's greatest units, a group practically exploding with talent and ideas.