Reviews

In Convergence Liberation Hafez Modirzadeh

11/26/14    Albums    By Mike Shanley

Hafez Modirzadeh
In Convergence Liberation
Pi Recordings

Hafez Modirzadeh offers an extensive explanation of “liberation convergence” in the liner notes to his latest album. To paraphrase, he calls this principle “consciousness gravitating toward a point of supreme balance, where all fear of extinction is removed...

When We Find Ourselves Alone Rodney Whitaker

11/25/14    Albums    By Jeff Tamarkin

Rodney Whitaker
When We Find Ourselves Alone
Mack Avenue Records

Rodney Whitaker’s ubiquity as a utility man—regular stints with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra and Roy Hargrove, director of the Mack Avenue Superband, high-profile recording dates with the likes of Orrin Evans and Cécile McLorin Salvant—may have...

Amalgamations Ali Jackson

11/24/14    Albums    By Britt Robson

Ali Jackson
Amalgamations
Sunnyside

Ali Jackson is a loyal acolyte of Wynton Marsalis. The trumpeter and Jazz at Lincoln Center artistic director became something of a father figure to Jackson after his dad died, and he’s helped shepherd the drummer’s career right up through his current position...

Charlie Haden/Jim Hall Charlie Haden/Jim Hall

11/24/14    Albums    By Colin Fleming

Charlie Haden/Jim Hall
Charlie Haden/Jim Hall
Impulse!

Cut at the Montreal International Jazz Festival in July 1990, this Haden-Hall bass/guitar duet album smacks of affinity, several ways over. The opening “Bemsha Swing” commences with a super-fluid Haden bass riff, nailing the song’s outside-of-time feel while...

Portraits in Space and Time Paul Bollenback

11/23/14    Albums    By Jeff Tamarkin

Paul Bollenback
Portraits in Space and Time
Mayimba

Portraits in Space and Time isn’t a live album, but Paul Bollenback makes a point of stressing that it’s deliberately structured like one. “This project was recorded almost exactly like the trio would play a gig,” writes the guitarist in his liner notes...

Identities Are Changeable Miguel Zenon

11/22/14    Albums    By Thomas Conrad

Miguel Zenon
Identities Are Changeable
Miel

Alto saxophonist and composer Miguel Zenón is one of the most decorated jazz musicians of his generation, as measured by Grammy nominations, poll placements and MacArthur and Guggenheim fellowships. He is important as a conceptualist. His eight recordings...

Historia Cindy Scott

11/22/14    Albums    By Christopher Loudon

Cindy Scott
Historia
Catahoula

New Orleans’ Cindy Scott launched her recording career in 2002 with a relatively safe, entirely respectable platter of standards. Seven years later, she upped her game with a looser, more assured and far more musically adventurous sophomore disc. Historia...

The Art of Conversation Kenny Barron/Dave Holland

11/21/14    Albums    By Shaun Brady

Kenny Barron/Dave Holland
The Art of Conversation
Impulse!

There are conversations meant solely for the ears of those involved, full of jocular camaraderie and inside references. And then there are those designed to be overheard, where the dialogue is meant to engage and enlighten anyone who is listening in as well...

Singing the Blues Freddy Cole

11/20/14    Albums    By Christopher Loudon

Freddy Cole
Singing the Blues
HighNote Records

Freddy Cole’s latest HighNote release, his eighth in 10 years, is a sort of 50th anniversary gift to himself, and to his listeners. In 1964, Cole made his LP debut with a fine, blues-tinged collection called Waiter, Ask the Man to Play the Blues . It should...

The Testament of Solomon John Zorn

11/19/14    Albums    By Bill Beuttler

John Zorn
The Testament of Solomon
Tzadik

Someone whose introduction to John Zorn came from dipping into the Masada Marathon at this past summer’s Newport Jazz Festival might be surprised by the composer’s quieter side. If the idea of Masada is, as Zorn has said, “to produce a sort of radical Jewish...