Become a member and get exclusive access to articles, live sessions and more!
Start Your Free Trial

Louis Sclavis: Characters on a Wall (ECM)

French clarinetist Louis Sclavis has composed a lot of music inspired by visual art, including soundtracks for modern and silent movies and a 2003 ECM release, Napoli’s Walls, which chronicles his response to the street frescoes in Naples created by the French artist Ernest Pignon-Ernest. With Characters on a Wall, Sclavis extends and alters his … Read More “Louis Sclavis: Characters on a Wall (ECM)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Jane Bunnett & Maqueque: On Firm Ground/Tierra Firme (Linus)

On the final track of Maqueque’s self-titled debut five years ago, Jane Bunnett spiked the punch with her longtime collaborator Hilario Durán and a few other heavyweights. For the band’s third album, Tierra Firme, the most prominent guest stars are Maqueque alumni Daymé Arocena and Melvis Santa on vocals, plus sacred steel guitarist Nicole “Nikki” … Read More “Jane Bunnett & Maqueque: On Firm Ground/Tierra Firme (Linus)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Jenny Scheinman & Allison Miller’s Parlour Game: Jenny Scheinman & Allison Miller’s Parlour Game (Royal Potato Family)

True to its name, the quartet Parlour Game plays music meant to evoke informal, intimate, and innocent settings, a gently bucolic mix of vintage jazz and Americana. This is personal roots music for violinist Jenny Scheinman, who grew up playing folk tunes around the campfire while living outdoors in the summer and had her formative … Read More “Jenny Scheinman & Allison Miller’s Parlour Game: Jenny Scheinman & Allison Miller’s Parlour Game (Royal Potato Family)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Spaza: Spaza (Mushroom Hour Half Hour)

Spaza is a South African collective with neither permanent members nor prewritten songs. Yet the seven improvised tracks on their eponymous album, recorded in 2015, both rivet and bewitch with a bold mélange of mysterious, penetrating, overlapping sounds. The six musicians heard converging on Spaza are part of several different Johannesburg scenes—Afro-funk, jazz, experimental electronic—and … Read More “Spaza: Spaza (Mushroom Hour Half Hour)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Will Sellenraad/Eric McPherson/Rene Hart: Greene Street Vol. 1 (Deko)

Guitarist Will Sellenraad has known drummer Eric McPherson since they were teens, more than 30 years ago in New York City. Back then, bassist Rene Hart had family living across the street from Sellenraad; they started playing together in college. The trio now hang out, practice, and record in a Greene Street space that once … Read More “Will Sellenraad/Eric McPherson/Rene Hart: Greene Street Vol. 1 (Deko)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Melissa Aldana: Visions (Motéma)

Chilean tenor saxophonist Melissa Aldana invokes the Mexican artist Frida Kahlo as the inspiration for Visions, which was originally commissioned as a suite, with its world premiere at Jazz Gallery last June. The disc showcases a stellar quintet, featuring pianist Sam Harris, bassist Pablo Menares, drummer Tommy Crane, and vibraphonist Joel Ross, on board for … Read More “Melissa Aldana: Visions (Motéma)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Quinsin Nachoff’s Flux: Path of Totality (Whirlwind)

In physics, flux is the movement and flow of radiant energy across a given area. In the mind of saxophonist Quinsin Nachoff, it’s a band of varying size uniquely qualified to explore a vast array of his latest concepts. Path of Totality doesn’t stint on this exploration—four of its six compositions go beyond 13 minutes. … Read More “Quinsin Nachoff’s Flux: Path of Totality (Whirlwind)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Johnathan Blake: Trion (Giant Step Arts)

Trion is frequently torrential, and aggressively virtuosic. A significant chunk of this magnanimous offering—nearly two hours of music, recorded live at the Jazz Gallery in New York, spread over 13 songs on two discs—is taken up with solo spots for Blake on drums, Linda May Han Oh on bass, and Chris Potter on tenor saxophone. … Read More “Johnathan Blake: Trion (Giant Step Arts)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Alex Sipiagin: NoFo Skies (Blue Room)

Through 11 records as a leader on the Criss Cross label between 2001 and 2017, the Russian trumpeter Alex Sipiagin steadily tweaked his no-compromise template of ingenious compositions and high-octane interplay, allowing his ace cohorts plenty of room for explosive expression. Sipiagin’s move to the Blue Room imprint has not deterred NoFo Skies from becoming … Read More “Alex Sipiagin: NoFo Skies (Blue Room)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Marc Copland: Gary (Illusion)

Pianist Marc Copland treats the compositions of bassist Gary Peacock with a respectful intimacy on this stark solo album. The two artists, who first met in Seattle back in 1983, share a quiet but sturdy iconoclasm. Copland also shares many of the virtues common to the three other pianists with whom Peacock has had especially … Read More “Marc Copland: Gary (Illusion)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Miho Hazama: Dancer in Nowhere (Sunnyside)

It isn’t a coincidence that the three albums Miho Hazama has recorded with her 13-piece “m_unit,” most recently Dancer in Nowhere, convey a sense of movement that is both tangible and ethereal. Hazama’s compositions are at once strikingly restless and reassuringly lithe. She knows how to conjure impressionistic clouds that blossom into clarity, and create … Read More “Miho Hazama: Dancer in Nowhere (Sunnyside)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Satoko Fujii: Full Calendar

When Satoko Fujii was four, she was so shy that she begged to quit kindergarten. In response, her parents sent her to piano lessons. It was the first step in the self-discovery of a genuinely avant-garde musical artist. “With music we can be totally free and it is special for that reason—the best thing about … Read More “Satoko Fujii: Full Calendar”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Atlantis Quartet: Hello Human (Shifting Paradigm)

It’s not a stretch to declare Atlantis Quartet the best small jazz ensemble based in Minnesota’s Twin Cities. The four members have been together since 2006 while individually amassing the requisite set of merit badges, including grants, work in a bevy of other bands and side projects, and first-call status when a jazz luminary needs … Read More “Atlantis Quartet: Hello Human (Shifting Paradigm)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

David Virelles: Igbó Alákọrin (The Singer’s Grove) Vol. I & II (Pi)

Igbó Alákọrin feels at once like the most conservative and most daring album of David Virelles’ career. The pianist’s Afro-Cuban lineage has been an important influence in his previous works, with indigenous percussion and incantations adding depth and emotion to avant-garde dissonance and improvisation. Igbó Alákọrin, on the other hand, is meant to be a doggedly … Read More “David Virelles: Igbó Alákọrin (The Singer’s Grove) Vol. I & II (Pi)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Andrew Cyrille: Lebroba (ECM)

It is profoundly satisfying to hear drummer Andrew Cyrille—who helped shepherd the tornado of Cecil Taylor through Unit Structures, among many others, more than 50 years ago—now in regal equipoise with a pair of esteemed elder peers, trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith and guitarist Bill Frisell. Lebroba relaxes you like a landscape painting, allowing your senses to … Read More “Andrew Cyrille: Lebroba (ECM)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Frank Morgan/George Cables: Montreal Memories (HighNote)

The late altoist Frank Morgan performed together frequently with pianist George Cables; evidence of that includes studio recordings of duets in 1986 (Double Image) and 1989 (half of Mood Indigo), as well as three separate live discs culled from an extended quartet engagement at New York’s Jazz Standard alongside drummer Billy Hart and bassist Carmen … Read More “Frank Morgan/George Cables: Montreal Memories (HighNote)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Michael Dease: Bonafide (Posi-Tone)

Trombonist/composer Michael Dease is a porkpie-hat kind of guy. On his new album, Bonafide, he strives to make fragrant both the swing and bop roots of the jazz tradition, and understands how an ensemble transforms the most personalized improvisations into acts of camaraderie. When Dease brings four trombones to bear on Phineas Newborn Jr.’s “Theme … Read More “Michael Dease: Bonafide (Posi-Tone)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Houston Person & Ron Carter: Remember Love (HighNote)

The phrase “age before beauty” does not apply to the duet partnership of tenor saxophonist Houston Person and acoustic bassist Ron Carter. Sure, Remember Love is the first of their six pairings on record to occur when both are octogenarians. Yes, seven of the eight covers are more than 65 years old, and the other, … Read More “Houston Person & Ron Carter: Remember Love (HighNote)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Alice Coltrane: Spiritual Eternal: The Complete Warner Bros. Studio Recordings (Real Gone)

Alice Coltrane departed from her corporeal form in 2007, 40 years after the passing of her more famous husband and musical partner, John Coltrane. And the inevitable reassessment and enriched appreciation of her artistry is belatedly underway. Even if Alice hadn’t been slandered in Yoko Ono-like fashion for supposedly catalyzing the breakup of the hallowed … Read More “Alice Coltrane: Spiritual Eternal: The Complete Warner Bros. Studio Recordings (Real Gone)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Now vs. Now: The Buffering Cocoon (Jazzland)

Keyboardist Jason Lindner first gained notice leading a big band at the New York nightclub Smalls. He has a solid résumé backing singers, playing Latin jazz, and leading and being an integral part of various small, adventurous, postbop ensembles. Chick Corea once described him as “a musical universe.” But as he nestles into his mid-forties, … Read More “Now vs. Now: The Buffering Cocoon (Jazzland)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Miguel Zenón Featuring Spektral Quartet: Yo Soy La Tradición (Miel)

The evolution of Miguel Zenón has been unpredictable and intriguing. Along with being the lone remaining charter member in the SFJazz Collective octet and the longtime leader of a whirlwind postbop quartet, the altoist has developed a fertile catalog of work blending jazz with the folkloric roots of his native Puerto Rico. Originally goosed along … Read More “Miguel Zenón Featuring Spektral Quartet: Yo Soy La Tradición (Miel)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Ted Nash Quintet: Live at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola (Plastic Sax)

Ted Nash is justly renowned for his sweeping, set-piece orchestrations. He came out of L.A., the son and nephew of musicians who played in big bands and on movie soundtracks, settled in as an ace arranger under Wynton Marsalis for the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, and has subsequently mounted big-band projects that have been … Read More “Ted Nash Quintet: Live at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola (Plastic Sax)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Black Art Jazz Collective: Armor of Pride (HighNote)

What’s in a name? The Black Art Jazz Collective welcomes the question. The bristling hard-bop swagger of this all-black sextet of bandleaders and first-call sidemen sends a message as palpable as the Langston Hughes quote (about the “duty of the younger negro artist”) that’s set beside Cheryl Pelt’s breakdown of jazz as a historical tool … Read More “Black Art Jazz Collective: Armor of Pride (HighNote)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Harold López-Nussa: Un Día Cualquiera (Mack Avenue)

Pianist Harold López-Nussa continues to hone his unique version of folk-jazz, intimately drawn from the conservatories and barrios of his native Cuba, where he still resides. Un Día Cualquiera translates into “Just Another Day,” and depicting the typical joys, struggles, and beliefs informing all of our lives is his intention here, with the understanding that Cuban … Read More “Harold López-Nussa: Un Día Cualquiera (Mack Avenue)”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.