reissue Archive

Hundred-word Reviews for December 2017: Reissues/Compilations

Today I take quick looks – in the form of 100-word reviews – at ten newly-reissued and/or compiled releases. There’s something for everyone – and lots for me – in this stack of discs. Chris Bell – I Am the Cosmos (Omnivore Recordings) In one sense, it’s beyond bizarre that the work of Chris Bell

Book Reviews for the End of 2017

With so much of 2017 spent writing a book of my own, I’ve found less time than usual to read the works of other authors. Happily, three titles that I did read were all superb. Here’s a quick close-to-end-of-year rundown. Women of Motown: An Oral History by Susan Whitall Seeing Whitall’s name on this book

Vinyl Roundup Part Two

Today I take a look at four simply superb reissue/compilations, all on vinyl. Don’t Look Now Original Soundtrack (Waxworks) Don’t Look Now was a 1973 thriller starring Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie, two of the era’s hottest actors. The film, directed by Nicolas Roeg (The Man Who Fell to Earth) is based on Daphne du

Ten 100-word Reviews: Archival/Reissue Releases

With a great deal of my time these days spent working on my new book and various artist interviews, I tend to amass a backlog of albums for review. To lessen that backlog, I present ten reviews, each distilled down to its essence. Or at least to 100 words. All of these titles are reissues,

Reviews: 12 Jazz Reissues (Part Two)

Alphonse Mouzon – In Search of a Dream (MPS) Powerhouse fusion drummer Mouzon made his name on sides by Les McCann (the stunning Invitation to Openness) and Weather Report’s debut, but it was with Larry Coryell’s 11th House that he gained top-level fame. This, the sixth album under his name, is guaranteed to please fans

Reviews: 12 Jazz Reissues (Part One)

Albert Ayler Quartet – Copenhagen Live 1964 (hatOLOGY) The music of tenor saxophonist Albert Ayler (1936-1970) is assuredly not for the jazz novitiate. With an approach that makes Ornette Coleman sound mainstream, Ayler pushed even the boundaries of free jazz. Released in cooperation with the musician’s estate, this never-before-heard live session from more than a

Album Review: Joe Henderson — The Elements

Released in 1974, The Elements is the 16th album from tenor saxophonist Joe Henderson. This four-track album features four extended tracks; each is an improvisational exploration/meditation on one the elements. Though much of Henderson’s work had been well within the relatively conservative parameters of hard- and post-bop, The Elements is a conscious and largely successful

Album Review: Gary Bartz Ntu Troop – Harlem Bush Music: Uhuru

The 1970s were a fascinating time in jazz. Fusion was establishing its footing, and a wide variety of artists had committed themselves to exploring the outer boundaries of the jazz form. One of the directions pursued was the incorporation of African rhythms and textures. Of course in and of itself, that was hardly a new

‘Stax 60’ Album Release Campaign Features 10 Albums by 10 Legendary Artists

The venerable and legendary Stax Records was started 60 years ago in Memphis, Tennessee. Originally doing business as Satellite Records, the label founded by Jim Stewart and Estelle Axton (and later hemled by Al Bell) would go on to release a catalog of staggering quality before falling victim to a host of problems that would

In Praise of Uriah Heep

Critical consensus has not been overly kind to Uriah Heep. The British heavy progressive rockers released a string of commercially successful albums in the 1970s – and persist in greatly altered form to this very day – but they often got short shrift from tastemakers. A typical summation of the group and its work can