instrumental Archive

Album Review: Joan Torres’ All is Fused — Of the Musical

The golden age of jazz-rock fusion was a relatively brief period; arguably it began with Miles Davis’ In a Silent Way, released in 1969. The new form enjoyed a number of highlights: Davis’ Bitches Brew and Jack Johnson, Larry Coryell’s albums with Eleventh House, as well several albums from Chick Corea’s Return to Forever, Weather

Album Review: Sun Ra — Standards

Jazz great Sun Ra (born Herman Blount) has an imposing reputation as the iconoclastic purveyor of wildly unusual and unconventional music. His influence is felt far beyond the confines of jazz, and that influence encompasses more than music: his attitude, his onstage sartorial choices and his self-mythologizing were all part of what made Sun Ra

Hundred-word Reviews: New Releases

There’s quite a massive stack of new (or at least new-when-I got-’em) releases here at Musoscribe World HQ. Time to review them. 6-String Drag – Top of the World (Schoolkids Records) This Raleigh-based group was at the forefront of the Americana scene, back when it didn’t even have a name (some called it alt-country). After

Seven Jazz Archival/Reissue Releases

Monty Alexander – Here Comes the Sun (MPS) Jamaican pianist Alexander has a bright, flowing and lyrical approach to his instrument. Originally released in 1971, Here Comes the Sun was Alexander’s sixth album. Working with three other musicians (bass, drums and percussion), the pianist is at the center of the arrangements on all seven of

Album Review: Ryan Summers — ii

Picture this scene in your mind’s eye: a desolate, windswept landscape, mostly monochromatic and largely devoid of detail, yet with ominous pockets of darkness that suggest an unknown danger lurking just out of sight. What might the soundtrack for that scene be? Ryan Summers’ ii provides one possible answer. A collection of synthesizer-based instrumentals, ii

Album Review: Jan Sturiale — Roadmaps

A classically-trained guitarist, Jan Sturiale expertly treads the fine line between tasty guitar instrumentals and ensemble jazz. On Roadmaps, the fourth album by the Italian guitarist/composer, there’s a wide-angle focus to the music. In practical terms, that means Sturiale is quite content to cede lead spots to his fellow musicians. As such, Roadmaps avoids being

100-word Reviews for November 2017: New Music

So much great music and so little time. Here’s ten reviews: all new music, each summed up in 100 words. All are worth your time. Bryant Fabian Marsalis – Do For You? (Consolidated Artists) I struggle with a lot of current-day jazz. No matter how I try, much of it leaves me cold. Here’s a

Evil Note Lab: Pushing the Boundaries of Live Musical Improvisation

Ableton Live is computer software that allows musicians real-time interactivity with sequences of notes, sounds and textures. While the software is often used as a creative studio tool, in the hands of Asheville musical collective Evil Note Lab, Ableton Live realizes its potential as a performance instrument. Evil Note Lab puts its groundbreaking musical experiment

Slacktone Gets to the Good Part Quickly

Surf instrumental music is a distinct musical style, one that has persisted in popularity even as countless other musical fashions have come and gone. While today surf music enjoys a cult following, that cult is as strong as ever. And thanks to its modern-day exponents – like Los Angeles-based Slacktone, who agressively update surf music,

Jonah Parzen Johnson’s Combination of Man, Machine and Instrument

A saxophonist employing the circular breathing method is impressive, but not as remarkable as it once was. At the top of the creative scale, jazz legend Rahsaan Roland Kirk used the technique; at the other end of the spectrum, Kenny G made it into the Guinness Book for playing the longest-held note on the saxophone