fusion Archive

Three More New Album Reviews

Cody ChesnuTT – My Love Divine Degree File next to: D’Angelo, Shuggie Otis Atlanta-based Cody ChesnuTT is the kind of artist who frustrates and fascinates – in equal measure – both critics and fans. His 2002 debut, The Headphone Masterpiece was roundly praised for its quality, all the more remarkable for having been a lo-fi,

The Allan Holdsworth Interview, Part Four

Continued from Part Three… What’s the status of the crowd funding project for Tales from the Vault? Tales From The Vault turned into a bit of a disaster, actually. There were some older tracks that I’d done before with Ernest and Joel but I never finished; I was going to finish them for the pledge

The Allan Holdsworth Interview, Part Three

Continued from Part Two… In recent years you’ve also been performing and recording with a baritone guitar. From your point of view, what is the appeal of that instrument? When I was playing violin, I used to love the sound of the viola. There was just something about that, just having a little bit lower

The Allan Holdsworth Interview, Part Two

Continued from Part One… In the years that you worked with Jean-Luc Ponty – because he was essentially the lead instrumentalist – did you have to ease back on some of what you were doing to leave space for him? Jean-Luc was great to work for; he left me alone pretty much as well. He

The Allan Holdsworth Interview, Part One

Note: Sometime in 2016, I was contacted by a management representative for guitarist Allan Holdsworth. Plans called for the progressive/fusion guitarist’s body of work to be combined and reissued as a boxed set, with release scheduled for 2017. My name had been given to Holdsworth’s rep as someone who could recommend a good publicist to

New Music Review Roundup, Part 3

Today I wrap up three days’ worth of reviews of new music. Dig if you will. The Pollyseeds – Sounds of Crenshaw, Vol. 1 As far as I know, none of the music on Sounds of Crenshaw Vol. 1 is used on the soundtrack of the Amazon Original series Bosch, but – like that crime

Jonathan Scales, Man of Steel

Spontaneity is a highly valued commodity in the jazz world. And Jonathan Scales has that quality in great supply. He brought that just-in-time approach to competing in a national search for musicians to serve as cultural ambassadors for an international concert tour in 2017. And in December, he toured with a collective of esteemed musicians

Hundred-word Reviews for Nov./Dec. 2016, Part 8 of 10

Manu Katché – Unstatic Style: jazz This is an album of tasty mostly-instrumental jazz that sometimes – but not always – leans in an Afro-Cuban direction. Luca Aquino’s trumpet is often the lead instrument, but there is plenty else going on throughout. The overall vibe is more subtle than fiery, but there’s some fascinating interplay

Esperanza Spalding’s Musical Evolution (or D+Evolution?), Part Two

Continued from Part One… Working with Tony Visconti In the music business, Tony Visconti is something of a household name. Since his start in 1968, Visconti has produced more than 120 albums for a wide variety of artists, including more than a dozen for David Bowie. He’s worked in a variety of musical genres, but

Esperanza Spalding’s Musical Evolution (or D+Evolution?), Part One

Note: portions of this feature appeared previously (and in different form) in altweeklies in Asheville NC, Chicago and Salt Lake City. — bk Cross-genre sensation Esperanza Spalding is something of an anomaly – albeit a welcome one – on today’s pop music landscape. A fine singer with an impressive range, she’s also a supremely accomplished