Album Review: Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings – Dap Dippin

Curated by Eddie Roberts of the New Mastersounds, Rare Sounds is a new subscription service that unearths gems from various genres, reissuing them on vinyl. The first round of releases included The Greyboy Allstars’ West Coast Boogaloo and the debut from Roberts’ band, Keb Darge Presents The New Mastersounds. The third record in that first

Album Review: Polyrhythmics — Man From the Future

Polyrhythmics are an eight-piece band from the Pacific Northwest. If your tastes run toward ‘70s fuk and soul, the current-day funk-soul revival of (primarily but not always instrumental) bands like New Mastersounds, you’ll luxuriate in the deep groove sounds of this outfit. But don’t go thinking that Polyrhythmics are also-rand traveling in the wake of

Album Review: The Greyboy Allstars with Fred Wesley — West Coast Boogaloo

The Greyboy Allstars have a rich history. Founded more than 25 years ago, the soul jazz group came together originally to work as a backing band for DJ Greyboy, a major figure in the deep groove scene. The band continues to this day – with nearly the same personnel as when it began – and

Hundred-word Reviews for December 2019, #3

Here’s the final installment of the year (and the decade!) of my quick, condensed album reviews. Ten titles, 100 words each. Seven are new releases; the remaining three are archival and/or reissue releases. There are some SERIOUS gems in here. Sweet Lizzy Project – Technicolor When most people think of Cuban music, their thoughts turn

Reviews: Three New Classic Jazz Albums

Three new and notable jazz releases have gone on the market recently. Two are from long-established artists who demonstrate that after decades playing jazz, they still have plenty that’s fresh, new and exciting to offer. The third comes at things from the other direction: it’s a collection of soul jazz classics played with fire and

Hundred-word Reviews, December 2018

This will almost certainly be my last roundup of new releases – capsule review style – for 2018. Lots of great music came out this year; don’t let anyone tell you differently. As always, each of these albums deserves more coverage than I’m able to give here, and each warrants a spin (at least) by

Album Review: Disaster Relief — s/t

Nominally classified as jazz, the Detroit and Ann Arbor, Michigan-based Disaster Relief occupies a musical space halfway between Leeds and New Orleans. The Leeds connection is the band’s funky like-mindedness to New Mastersounds, reliable purveyors of soulful boogaloo. The Crescent City vibe comes from the group’s deep-groove jazz sensibility. Honking saxophone dialogue atop a rubbery

Hundred Word Reviews for January 2018, Part 1

As we begin another calendar year, now seems like a good time to clear out some of my backlog. All of these albums are new (or at least newish) releases. Paul Moran – Smokin’ B3 Vol. 2: Still Smokin’ As a lover of soulful organ jazz a la Jimmy Smith, I was taken in by

Six New Jazz Reviews

Gerald Clayton – Tributary Tales (Motéma Music) Clayton has an impressive family pedigree in music, but hs own career deserves serious attention. As Musical director of the Monterey Jazz Festival, Clayton rubs elbows with some of the biggest names in jazz. But the pianist’s work holds up – and quite often towers above – that

Album Review: Mary Frances – A New Perspective

Mary Frances is best known as keyboardist and lead vocalist for Yo Mama’s Big Fat Booty Band, and for her work with Grammy Award-winning kid hop artist Secret Agent 23 Skidoo. But on her debut solo album, A New Perspective, Frances moves ever so slightly away from the collaborative nature of those projects, and toward