With Stefan Aeby on piano, Andre Pousaz on bass, and Michi Stulz on drums. CD
Ellery Eskelin/Christian Weber/Michael Grenier —
Pearls ... CD Intakt (Switzerland), 2019. New Copy ...
Tenorist Ellery Eskelin really sounds great here – carving out these soulful, angular lines in the kind of format that seems to make him shine the most – a trio, with Christian Weber on bass and Michael Grenier on drums! Some of the tunes are of older origin, which brings out some roots in the players we might not expect – while others are originals composed by the three, and presented in a style that mixes the modern and traditional in a very captivating way. Titles include "Magnetic Rag", "ABC", "Black Drop", "Jive At Five", "The Pearls", "La Fee Verte", "Ru Jardiniere", and "Il Gatto". CD
Dave Gisler Trio with Jaimie Branch —
Zurich Concert ... CD Intakt (Switzerland), 2020. New Copy ...
Trumpeter Jaimie Branch makes a very strong addition to the trio of guitarist Dave Gisler – bringing her tremendous sense of sound to the carefully-crafted lines of sonic color that flow from Gisler's strings! The rest of the group features Raffaele Bossard on bass and Lionel Friedli on drums – both of whom often keep things moving forward while Branch and Gisler get pretty loose and free – Dave sometimes in fuzzier territory, almost rocking at one point – other times more in a loose sense of tonal exploration. Titles include "Rabbits On The Run", "Spiegelgasse", "What Goes Up", "Nameless"- "Cappuccino", and "One Minute Too Late". CD
Ingrid Laubrock & Kris Davis —
Blood Moon ... CD Intakt (Switzerland), 2020. New Copy ...
A beautiful duo, improvising freely – the piano of Kris Davis and very vivid tenor and soprano sax of Ingrid Laubrock – both interwoven in these incredible ways that make the whole thing seem like an effortless act of spontaneous creation – nothing forced, nothing overdone, just two well-matched minds spinning out an amazing array of notes and tones together! Laubrock's soprano is especially nice – often used spatially, in ways that are not unlike some of the more modern moments we've heard from Jimmy Giuffre – and Davis can hold back one minute, attack the next – always with a strong degree of sensitivity to the reeds. Titles include "Flying Embers", "Whistlings", "Jagged Jaunts", "Golgi Complex", "Gunweep", and "Blood Moon". CD
James Brandon Lewis —
Molecular ... CD Intakt (Switzerland), 2020. New Copy ...
Saxophonist James Brandon Lewis just keeps getting deeper and deeper with each new release – very different than the artist who first emerged a number of records back, and one with a strong ability to explore the farther sides of the jazz spectrum! That's definitely the case here – as Lewis plays tenor at the head of a quartet with Aruan Ortiz on piano, Brad Jones on bass, and Chad Taylor on drums – a lineup who are more than fluid enough to move with the ideas that flow effortlessly both from the compositional pen of the leader, and his well-crafted, very personal lines on tenor sax! The tunes vary in length, which further deepens the individuality of the set – and titles include "Helix", "Per 1", "Breaking Code", "An Anguish Departed", "Loverly", "Molecular", "Cesaire", and "A Lotus Speaks". CD
Some of the boldest work we've ever heard from tenorist James Brandon Lewis – an artist you might know from his bigger label recordings for Okeh/Sony, but who sounds completely unbridled here in the company of the great drummer Chad Taylor! Taylor's a player who can step outside strongly, yet still find this inherent sense of swing – and that balance works beautifully alongside the tenor of Lewis, and seems to encourage him to take some great chances throughout the set – with some especially great moments of drums and tenor that almost evoke the way that David Murray or Sonny Rollins might handle such a performance! A really revelatory set – and a great reminder of Taylor's genius, too – with selections that include "Watakushi No Sekai", "Matape", "Come Sunday", "Imprints", "Twenty Four", "Radiance", and "Under/Over The Rainbow". CD
The legendary drum work of Andrew Cyrille has a fantastically fresh setting here – matched with the piano of Aruan Ortiz and the percussion of Mauircio Herra – both of whom add some spoken bits to the performance! Cyrille's brilliance hasn't dimmed at all over the years – and he's still one of the best folks to be able to roam freely all over the drum kit, while never losing his way – really amazing us with his sense of freedom, but in the way that freedom all makes sense – a great balance to some of the bolder moments that Ortiz brings to his piano, and filled in with work on changui bongoes, cata, marimbula, and cowbells by Herra. CD
There's some great energy going on in the group of tenorist Ohad Talmor – this way of making these bold chunks of sound together – crackling with the sort of life that you might find in a more outside sort of record, but with this cohesion and pulsing unity that really keeps things swinging – albeit in an offbeat way! Many elements in the music often come down on the groove together, then splinter apart – the trumpet of Shane Endsley, guitar of Miles Okazaki, piano of Jacob Sacks, bass of Matt Pavloka, and drums of Dan Weiss – all given good guidance by the leader, who also brings in some flutes, clarinets, and bansuri on one track too. Titles include "Layas Lines", "Casado", "Scent", "Groupings", and "Musique Anodine". CD
Spacious sounds from pianist Alexander Von Schlippenbach – a set dedicated to Aki Takase, a fellow pianist who's had an influence on his work in more ways than one – and who here is clearly the inspiration for slower movement and more contemplative sounds on the keys! We've always loved this side of Schlippenbach – he can be a demon when he wants to, but is often even more compelling when he works on the spaces between the notes – which is definitely the case here, as the set moves between short improvisations and some compositions that draw inspiration from the shared life of Aki and Alexander. Titles include "Cleo", "Naninga Nandemo", "Zycado", "Frage Nicht", "Dydo", "Improvisation V", "Haru No Yuki", "Improvisation III", "Tell You", "I Told You", and "Torso". CD
Omri Ziegele Where's Africa —
Going South ... CD Intakt (Switzerland), 2017. Used ...
Omri Ziegele on alto saxophone, Uzbek flue & vocals, Yves Theiler on keyboards, reed organ, melodica & vocals & Dario Sisera on percussion & drums. CD
Omri Ziegele plays alto sax here with all these wonderfully evocative elements – twists, turns, and sharp angles that flow effortlessly from his horn – sometimes giving it the depth of a tenor, but also with the sharpness and occasional exotic qualities of a lighter reed instrument – a quality that really sets him apart from the pack! There's one tune here dedicated to Ornette Coleman – and although Ziegele doesn't have any of Ornette's rhythmic conceptions, his tone might be somewhere in the same territory – but definitely set up differently here with the bass of Christian Weber and drums of Han Bennink – the last of whom blows us away all over again in a few spots! Titles include "Donders Wonders", "Saw That Smile", "When The River Spoke", "Line For A Friend Of Mine", and "All Those Yesterdays". CD
Barry Guy on bass, Marilyn Crispell on piano, Evan Parker & Mats Gustafsson on sax, Hans Koch on clarinet & sax, Johannes Bauer on trombone, Herb Robertson on trumpet, Per Ake Holmlander on tuba & Paul Lytton & Raymond Strid on percussion. CD
The title's a great one – a very apt description of the sorts of sounds created by the improvising duo of Tomeka Reid on cello and Alexander Hawkins on piano – as the performance has this sharp, stark approach at times – jagged sounds from either instrument, almost as bursts of spontaneity – but constellated together to form a beautiful progression of music! The work is maybe a great illustration of that way that, taken as a snapshot, free improvisation might seem like nonsense – but taken as a whole, there's an intrinsic logic that really holds together the creative magic between two very imaginative performers like this duo. Reid maybe has more of an edge than usual, and Hawkins' work on piano really lives up to the best legacy of the Intakt label – on titles that include "If Becomes Is", "Albert Ayler", "A Guess That Deepens", "Shards & Constellations", "Danced Together", and "Strange Familiar". CD
Tim Berne's Snakeoil —
Deceptive 4 ... CD Intakt (Switzerland), 2020. New Copy 2CD ...
Out Of Stock
There's nothing deceptive about this quartet – as the group work here live, completely unfettered – with the kind of honest, open interaction that have made Snakeoil one of the greatest musical contributions from reedman Tim Berne! The lineup has a special sort of edge – no bass, and lots of interplay between Berne's alto and the clarinets of Oscar Noriega – reed lines that on their own would be enough, but which get exactly the kind of right support from the piano of Matt Michell and drums of Ches Smith – all four members often working together in these sonic clusters that really reflect their long-running understanding of each others strengths and talents! The tracks here are all nice and long – performed live at Firehouse – and titles include "OCDC", "Moornoats", "Perception", "Deception", "Seven", "Scanners", and "Hemphill". CD