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Ernesto Cervini’s Turboprop: Abundance (Anzic)

On paper, Ernesto Cervini’s Turboprop looks like nothing so much as Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers—a drummer-led sextet fronted by three horns. But where Blakey’s leadership focused heavily on rhythmic drive, Cervini takes a more nuanced approach. It isn’t just that he routinely scales his patterns to fit what bassist Dan Loomis and pianist Adrean Farrugia … Read More “Ernesto Cervini’s Turboprop: Abundance (Anzic)”

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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)”

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Vijay Iyer Sextet: Far From Over (ECM)

This review is being undertaken in the days immediately following President Donald Trump’s notorious press conference of Aug. 15, when he stated that there was “blame on both sides” for the violence in Charlottesville, Va. That the moral distinction between members of hate groups and those protesting hatred is lost on our current president imparts … Read More “Vijay Iyer Sextet: Far From Over (ECM)”

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Arturo O’Farrill Sextet: Boss Level

A free-flowing sense of adventure permeates this album, recorded a few days after the sextet concluded a stint at Birdland. It’s obvious that the musicians-including pianist Arturo O’Farrill and his sons Adam (trumpet) and Zack (drums), along with tenor saxophonist Livio Almeida, guitarist Travis Reuter and bassist Shawn Conley-were loose, primed and ready when they … Read More “Arturo O’Farrill Sextet: Boss Level”

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