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Club D’Elf: Electric Moroccoland/So Below

A Boston-based instrumental collective whose talented cast revolves mostly around the vision of bassist/founder Mike Rivard and drummer Erik Kerr, Club d’Elf is, to say the least, multifaceted. On the first half of the ensemble’s new double-CD set, Electric Moroccoland, Rivard draws deep from the Gnawan sounds of North African trance music. It’s an incredible … Read More “Club D’Elf: Electric Moroccoland/So Below”

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Bela Fleck & the Flecktones: Rocket Science

A reunion of the original quartet known as Béla Fleck and the Flecktones can be considered something of an event. Banjoist Fleck is probably the most accomplished “newgrass” player of the last three decades, bassist Victor Wooten a virtuoso in his own right and brother Roy “Futureman” Wooten is practically otherworldly on his ever-evolving, custom-made … Read More “Bela Fleck & the Flecktones: Rocket Science”

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Tord Gustavsen Ensemble: Restored, Returned

Pianist Tord Gustavsen is definitely pushing ahead. After three inspiring recordings working his distilled magic within the constructs of a quiet piano trio, the Norwegian bandleader has expanded his purview to include both saxophone and the human voice. Gustavsen has a solid history of working with singers, and vocalist Kristin Asbjørnsen was clearly up to … Read More “Tord Gustavsen Ensemble: Restored, Returned”

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Bobby Bradford Extet: Midnight Pacific Airwaves

Veteran cornet player and jazz educator Bobby Bradford has a disciplined, individualistic sound, but he’s sometimes remembered best for his associations: performing with Ornette Coleman’s groups in the ’50s and ’60s and working in tandem with John Carter from 1969 until the clarinetist’s death in 1991. This live radio recording from Los Angeles in 1977 … Read More “Bobby Bradford Extet: Midnight Pacific Airwaves”

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Django Bates: Spring is Here (Shall We Dance?)

It’s tempting to call the music of Django Bates postmodern, as the keyboardist/composer/bandleader uses multifaceted forms, whimsy and shifting allusions to notable musical genres and seemingly unrelated song structures. But that’s just another way of saying that Django Bates is making complicated sounds that oftentimes defy categorization and remain decidedly non-commercial. His music is certainly … Read More “Django Bates: Spring is Here (Shall We Dance?)”

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