jazz Archive

Album Review: Soft Machine Legacy – Burden of Proof

Readers of rock history will occasionally stumble across references to the “Canterbury scene,” a construct of music journalists that – in real terms – hardly happened at all. But the term is more legitimate than the “Bosstown sound,” a whole-cloth 60s concoction of the MGM record label that trumpeted such long-forgotten acts as The Beacon

A Quick Jazz Vinyl Update

Three titles released on the Jazzhaus label last fall are now available on vinyl as well: Legends Live: Dizzy Gillespie Quintet – Liederhalle Stuttgart November 29, 1961 Legends Live: Albert Mangelsdorff Quintett – Audimax Freiburg June 22, 1964 Lost Tapes: Zoot Sims – Baden-Baden June 23, 1958 All three are worth your time; reviews of

Album Review: Bill Frisell — Big Sur

Avant-jazz. Atonal no-wave. Country. Noise rock. Americana. Those are just a few of the musical idioms within which guitarist Bill Frisell has worked in his thirty-plus years as a recording artist under his own name. With literally dozens of albums to his credit Frisell is unafraid to explore new territory; his musical eclecticism makes, say,

Album Review: Duke Ellington — Rare Live Recordings 1952-53

If your tastes include the work of Duke Ellington – one of the most important composers and bandleaders of the 20th century – then you might want to check this one out. While Ellington’s catalog is staggeringly extensive, almost all of it is worthwhile. In fact, when The MusicHound Guide to Jazz attempts to list

Hundred Word Reviews: June 2013

Here’s another installment in my occasional series of capsule reviews; this time ’round I’m focusing on new releases from long-established artists who nonetheless aren’t quite household names. My self-imposed limit for this particular exercise is 100 words on each album. House of Love – She Paints Words in Red If you love the jangle of

You Can Be Who You Are: The John McLaughlin Interview, Part 4

Continued from Part Three… Bill Kopp: Speaking of playing onstage, how do the live pieces differ from the studio versions? Do you open them up for improvisation, or are they tightly structured? John McLaughlin: Oh, yes! The minute we start playing. They even change in the studio; take 1 could be different from take 2.

You Can Be Who You Are: The John McLaughlin Interview, Part 3

Continued from Part Two… Bill Kopp: This is an obvious thing to say, but since instrumental music has to convey its messages without the benefit of lyrics, it has to do so using tone, volume, melody, harmony and so forth. When you compose a piece, do you think about it in extramusical terms – that

You Can Be Who You Are: The John McLaughlin Interview, Part 2

Continued from Part One… Bill Kopp: A Tribute to Jack Johnson is among the most underrated of all Miles’ works, I think. John McLaughlin: A lot of people don’t underrate it, though. Especially him. And in the end, he’s the one that counts. BK: You composed all of the tracks on the new album. How

You Can Be Who You Are: The John McLaughlin Interview, Part 1

Far be it from me to attempt to introduce John McLaughlin. One of the world’s greatest guitarists, his career has spanned five decades. His latest album Now Here This is credited to John McLaughlin and the 4th Dimension, and it’s the third studio album from this particular improvisational jazz outfit. The band’s 2013 tour will

Album Review: Redtenbacher’s Funkestra – The Cooker

A very good friend of mine – a drummer and a serious student of music – has, in the last several years, become quite wary – cynical, almost – about musical genre labeling. In his case, it’s the term garage rock. “I can’t tell you how many times,” he’ll say, “that some band has advertised