Reviews

August Love Song Heather Masse & Roswell Rudd

06/23/16    Albums    By Christopher Loudon

Heather Masse & Roswell Rudd
August Love Song
Red House

Though she was born and raised in Maine and studied vocal jazz at NEC, Heather Masse remains best known for her now decade-long membership in the Canadian folk/bluegrass trio the Wailin’ Jennys and her frequent appearances, with and without the group, on...

Summertime: Willie Nelson Sings Gershwin Willie Nelson

06/22/16    Albums    By Christopher Loudon

Willie Nelson
Summertime: Willie Nelson Sings Gershwin
Sony/Legacy

Suggesting that Willie Nelson’s voice has aged is like saying a sequoia seems somehow gnarlier. Sure Nelson’s trademark sound has grown more grizzled, a bit more parched. But place this latest collection of standards aside his landmark Stardust , from 1978...

DC Jazz Fest at the Yards

06/22/16    Concerts    By Michael J. West

DC Jazz Fest at the Yards

Kamasi, Ravi, Revive Big Band and more

Celestial Weather Wadada Leo Smith & John Lindberg

06/21/16    Albums    By Bill Beuttler

Wadada Leo Smith & John Lindberg
Celestial Weather
Tum

Wadada Leo Smith and John Lindberg have performed as a duo over the years, since connecting in the ’70s in Anthony Braxton’s Creative Orchestra, but it wasn’t until June of 2012 that they got around to recording an album as such. The result, though less...

Intersection Ark Ovrutski Quintet

06/20/16    Albums    By Thomas Conrad

Ark Ovrutski Quintet
Intersection
Origin Records

Intersection is an unusual combination of personalities. Ark Ovrutski, originally from the Ukraine, is a bassist given to dark, heavy, solemn solos. But he likes to surround himself with light-footed Brazilians (pianist Helio Alves, drummer Duduka Da Fonseca...

Beginning of a Memory Matt Wilson's Big Happy Family

06/17/16    Albums    By Matt R. Lohr

Matt Wilson's Big Happy Family
Beginning of a Memory
Palmetto Records

The jazz funeral is a time-honored tradition, but it’s seldom been more exultant or moving than on Matt Wilson’s Beginning of a Memory . The drummer’s first album as leader since the death of his wife, Felicia, in 2014, this recording unites Wilson’s Arts...

Old Locks and Irregular Verbs Henry Threadgill Ensemble Double Up

06/16/16    Albums    By Thomas Conrad

Henry Threadgill Ensemble Double Up
Old Locks and Irregular Verbs
Pi Recordings

Recent Pulitzer winner Henry Threadgill only makes important records. In the jazz avant-garde, he is both revered elder statesman and active agent provocateur. Old Locks and Irregular Verbs is momentous in at least three aspects. Threadgill, a major multireed...

Let Loose Peter Bernstein

06/16/16    Albums    By Thomas Conrad

Peter Bernstein
Let Loose
Smoke Sessions

Peter Bernstein has built a career in the service of others, especially saxophone players and organists. He was in Sonny Rollins’ best working band of the new millennium, and has been crucial to Lou Donaldson and Dr. Lonnie Smith. On Let Loose he slips seamlessly...

In Movement Jack DeJohnette/Ravi Coltrane/Matthew Garrison

06/16/16    Albums    By Mac Randall

Jack DeJohnette/Ravi Coltrane/Matthew Garrison
In Movement
ECM Records

Talk about having the weight of history on your back: For the first time on disc, the sons of one half of jazz’s all-time greatest quartet are teaming up with a master drummer who collaborated with both of their fathers. To everyone’s credit, they tackle...

Miles Ahead: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack Miles Davis/Various Artists

06/16/16    Albums    By Mac Randall

Miles Davis/Various Artists
Miles Ahead: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Columbia/Legacy

Enjoyable as it is, the soundtrack album for Don Cheadle’s quasi-biopic Miles Ahead prompts a query common to such releases: For whom, other than completists, is this intended? Not your typical fan, as there are no previously unheard Miles items and some...