Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Yazz Ahmed - Solo 7"s Vol​.​1 (May 2021)

She Stands On The Shore is a special arrangement of the main theme from Yazz’s 2015 suite, Alhaan Al Siduri, which will be the basis of her next full studio album scheduled for release in 2022. The suite is influenced by the rich heritage of folk music from her native Bahrain, including the haunting laments of the pearl divers and the celebratory music of the traditional women drumming groups. The track evokes the character of Siduri, from the Epic of Gilgamesh, a wise woman who lives on an island of absolute beauty, which some scholars have suggested may be Bahrain. With the exception of the layered handclaps, all sounds in this track are generated from Yazz’s trumpet and flugelhorn with electronic processing and looping.

One Girl sees Yazz responding live to Asmara’s exquisite remix of One Girl Among Many from Polyhymnia Remixed (2020). Using thematic elements from the original, Yazz improvises freely on her flugelhorn and Kaoss Pad against this lush minimalist backdrop, offering a new twist on her composition inspired by Malala Yousafzai and her advocacy for education for all.

“During the last 15 months I have had to discover new ways of creating music. I’m very fortunate to have a small studio at home where I’ve spent a lot of time working on various projects, learning as I go. I’ve collaborated with other artists on some remote sessions, recorded and filmed material for streaming events and I’ve also been working on developing my next studio album. It’s now a year since I shared Under Quiet Skies here on Bandcamp and I thought it was high time that I committed some of my solo recordings to vinyl. This year has taught me just how much I love interacting with the musicians in my band and performing live for all of you, I can’t express how much I miss it. However, exploring what I can create by myself, with limited resources, has been one positive experience to come out of these dark times. I hope this music brings you some joy.” – Yazz Ahmed, May 2021 

1. She Stands On The Shore 06:02
2. One Girl 04:56

Yazz Ahmed – trumpet/flugelhorn/electronics/handclaps/composition

One Girl includes extracts from One Girl Among Many (Asmara Remix)
Recorded at Tatami Studios 2020/2021
Produced by Yazz Ahmed and Noel Langley
Mastered by Robin Morrison

Final Step - Disconnections (June 14, 2021)

From the multi-lingual border region of Ticino in Switzerland, guitarist Matteo Finali brings Final Step with their 5th album release, Disconnections.

To be organised neatly on your shelf marked ‘jazz fusion’, the group display a shared passion for that post-Miles brand of electric jazz which unites rock, funk, blues and ethnic music.

“At a time when everyone is seemingly ‘connected’ all the time via their computers and phones, we want to bring a much-needed jolt of energy, reminding people of the importance of disconnecting and enjoying the spirit of live music.”

Their 2017 release Live at Estival Jazz was recorded when the band opened for Mike Manieri’s latest iteration of Steps Ahead at one of Switzerland’s biggest festivals; this 2021 outing sees them back in the studio, adding an extra layer of slick production, colourful effects and bite-sized interludes to the proceedings.

The music is passionate, rhythmic and unashamedly funky, whilst displaying a compositional creativity that underscores the bandleader’s jazz credentials.

1. Prelude (Love Ballade)
2. Disconnections
3. Leaving For
4. In A Brookyln Store
5. Interlude (Country Road)
6. Prickly Pear Jam
7. Ladybug
8. Sunday Morning Rev.
9. Postlude (Dreamtime)

Matteo Finali - guitar
Mirko Roccato - saxophones
Alessandro Ponti - hammond & keys
Federico Barluzzi - bass
Dario Milan - drums

Recorded and mixed by Mauro Fiero @ Recording Studio Canaa, Losone (Switzerland)
Mastered by Andrea De Bernardi @ Eleven Mastering, Busto Arsizio (Italy)
Produced by Matteo Finali @ Final Step Music, Carmorino (Switzerland)

Nyssa Musique - Comme Au Moulin (2021 Ici Bientot)

Paris 1985...‘Extra-European’ Traditions meet Jazz and Minimal Music. An unusual array of instruments turn music into a dialogue. For a unique record ... vivid, full of texture, somewhere between Midori Takada, Don Cherry and Jon Hassell.

Beginning of the eighties, 5 musicians rehearse in a contemporary dance class hall, upstairs from the ‘’New Morning", renowned Music venue in Paris. Nyssa Musique is born. Passionate for a long time about traditional music, like those of the Middle East, India and East Asia, but also about African traditions, they throw a bridge between Jazz and ‘Extra-European’ traditions, resulting in what would be called "Spiritual Jazz" today, a little bit in the style of Don Cherry's Organic Music or Pharoah Sanders. With the notable difference, however, that their creations are strongly infused by contemporary classical and repetitive music, notably Steve Reich's work with whom they share a great interest for the traditional cultures of Southeast Asia, particularly Indonesia and its gamelans.

In the original group we have Armand Amar, Ballet Music composer and John Boswell. Both specialists of traditional hand percussion which they had been studying for a long time in India and the Middle East, they are also very fond of synthesizers. Three other talented musicians quickly join them: Jean-François Roger, percussionist, marimba and vibraphone specialist, Henri Tournier, multi-flutist and Renaud Garcia-Fons, double bass player, who has a passion for the Middle East and has developed a virtuosic play of the bow, reminding that of Cecil Mc Bee.

Each of them enriches the ensemble with their personality, originality and musical generosity. The rehearsal hall is rapidly invaded by the phenomenal instrumentarium put together by Armand Amar. A great opportunity for the musicians, for the dancers, to have access to an endless choice of instruments, offering infinite possibilities for mixing different colors and timbres. Their sense for being a group and their great capacity for improvising culminates, in 1985, in the composition of their first and only album Comme au Moulin (« As by the windmill"), testimony of years of creating without hidden agenda.

Authentic, free and vibrant, still today, this album has no real equivalent. Even though it recalls the Fourth World current by its combination of traditional instruments with a subtle use of synthesizers, Comme au moulin gives more space to improvisation. It may also recall those of Midori Takada, less the New Age esthetics. An album that should delight as well lovers of "Love Supreme" by John Coltrane, of "Vernal Equinox" by Jon Hassell, as those of Moondog, an artist who, like them, invented a music based on the use of untypical percussions, at the confluence of 'Extra-European' traditions, Jazz and Classical, all together complex and hypnotic.

1. Rienne 05:29
2. Route De Sumatra 04:37
3. Bside 03:15
4. Comme Au Moulin 05:53
5. Lacustre 06:15 video
6. Vol D'Ibis 05:14
7. Oued 03:54
8. Sargasses 05:26

Armand Amar - Renaud Garcia-Fons - Henri Tournier - John Boswell - Jean-François Roger

Jamie Fox - When I Get Home (May 12, 2021)

Jamie Fox's first CD, released in 2006, featuring a crew of stellar NYC based musicians. All compositions are originals by Jamie Fox, performed in various instrumental combinations.

1. Five One & A Half 07:27
2. Row After Row 06:36
3. All In Time 07:36
4. Moniker 06:47
5. Ognat 07:11
6. Leisure 06:16
7. Mine & Yours 06:56
8. Childhood 05:14
9. New News 07:06
10. When I Get Home 06:42

Jamie Fox - guitar and compositions
Dan Willis - saxophone
Peck Allmond - saxophone, trumpet, euphonium
Kenny Werner - piano
Stephan Crump - bass
Michael Sarin - drums

Good Vibes Trio - Three Little Guys (May 12, 2021)

Our second recorded work stands in continuity with the previous one, Sunday morning (released in 2016), although marking an evolution and introducing some innovations.

Almost all the compositions are our own. In addition, the recording features two arrangements of classical derivation: Gabriel Fauré’s Pavane and the theme from Sergej Rachmaninov’s Third Concerto for piano and orchestra. Classical nuances and references were already present in our previous work, but this time we tried to get in relation with two great composers in music history.

Another important novelty is the featuring of two guests, on two tracks: Bruno Martinetti on trumpet and Didier Yon on trombone.

A touch of funk, some classical nuances and most importantly the sensitivity, life and music experiences of each of us. Enjoy the music.

Dedicated to Chick Corea, one of the greatest musicians and composers of all time.

1. Daisy Wants To Fly 06:24
2. Broken Harmonies 05:58
3. Pavane (G. Fauré) 08:16
4. Two Little Guys 06:45
5. Haute Mer 04:36
6. Rac 3 05:04
7. Valentina & J. 07:55
8. Dew Water 04:26

Beppe Barbera - piano
Maurizio Amato - bass
Lorenzo Barbera - drums/vibraphone

Project Omaha - It’s Been a Long Time (May 12, 2021)

Recorded on June 6 and 7, 2016, at Ware House Sound, Omaha, Nebraska and originally released in 2017 on the 10 track album “It’s Been a Long Time” by Project Omaha

1. Martian Eyes 06:31
2. NYSA 06:41

Bill Wimmer - saxophones
Bryan McCune - cornet, flugelhorn
Victor Lewis - drums
George Cables - piano
Mark Luebbe - bass
Joey Gulizia - percussion
Wardell Smith - flute

The ZoneRangers - Twilight (May 2021)

Originally released in 2001, this free-wheeling electro-acoustic excursion summarizes several collaborative improv sessions in 2000/2001

1. Seconds from Nowhere 06:41
2. Galactic Express 09:32
3. Through the Ether 06:22
4. The Zone at Twilight 05:28
5. Mofunculus 06:16
6. I'm Scared 04:42
7. a. Doo da da Doo b. A Theory of Evolution 14:04
8. Nice to Michu 04:29
9. Snowman's Land 16:03

Bryan McCune - cornet, electronics
Jim Crew - keyboards
Francis Dyer - drums
Rick Lassiter - double bass

All songs composed by The ZoneRangers

Bryan McCune - trumpet rock (May 2021)

Cornetist/composer Bryan McCune's music draws from a wide stylistic palette, including jazz, blues, rock, folk, western, eastern, and beyond. He often incorporates an ever evolving effects rig as part of his sonic signature, while never completely abandoning the natural sound of the cornet (well, almost never).

1. Wayfaring Stranger 06:21
2. Revival on North Evergreen 06:31
3. The Trumpet Rock 06:46
4. Brudog's Lament 06:39
5. Martian Eyes 08:00
6. Ombah 09:36
7. Apostle of Droll 04:02

This album was originally released on cd in 2005

Bryan McCune- cornet, electronics, accordion, guitars, flugabone, keyboard
Francis Dyer- drums
Rick Lassiter- bass
Jim Crew- organ, keyboard
Mark Daumen- tuba
Wayne Leechford- baritone saxophone

All songs composed by Bryan McCune, except Wayfaring Stranger (traditional)

Isaiah Collier & The Chosen Few - Cosmic Transitions (May 12, 2021 Division 81 Records)

Transformation is the constant that unfolds infinitely. Those moments when future becomes the past, and the past becomes the present. Cosmic Transitions navigates the challenges and changes of existence leading up to 2020 and beyond.

It is best for anyone who really seeks to take a journey to know that all the steps in between shape the arrival. Isaiah Collier and The Chosen Few etched together an occurrence in this recorded performance of a five-part Suite composed by Collier. To compress all the understanding, lessons, love, and humility into writing would surely be taking the breath from the poetic moment that occurred on September 23rd, 2020. These artists and more importantly, these souls took a journey with the intention of pushing beyond the limitations of the world, critics, and perhaps even their own expectations.

This performance takes place at Van Gelder Studio’s on John Coltrane’s birthday, in the very room where he and so many other compassionate artists pushed beyond what was known and created a new wave in sound. So many steps were taken to achieve this moment of boundless reaching. Music is the Universal Language. The unifying force that bends reality around its subjects, as it services as an instrument of unity. Beyond wherever it is that society is, it is music and love the saves the day. 

Each musician on this recording takes hold of this composition and threads their own path to the purpose of this work of art. That purpose is like most forms of art left to an audience for interpretation to examine their place in life and hopefully feel a connection to something more than the here and now. Cosmic Transition begins in invocation with frequency’s resonating in the same room where so many had stood with hopes and intentions that their art and purpose service a greater understanding.

This Quartet performance finds each musician pushing and exploring the sonics of their individual instruments to expand as one wave, one journey. I implore anyone daring enough to take this journey, that you listen to this experience in its entirety.

Every dimension of the room both on the physical and spiritual plane made this moment possible. Do you hear those few seconds when John walked into the room? Beyond any space and time, beyond the common understanding of life and death, beyond a type of music or crowd, Cosmic Transitions is a doorway for all. For all those who came before and after gratitude for your ear and hopefully your heart. As’e! -Ausar Ra

1. Invocation/Part I. Forgiveness
2. Part II. Humility
3. Part III. Understanding/Part IV. Truth and Guidance
4. Part V. Mercury's Retrograde video
5. Cosmic Transitions

Composed, Written, and Arranged by Isaiah Collier

Soprano and Tenor Sax: Isaiah Collier
Drums: Michael Shekwoaga Ode
Upright Bass: Jeremiah Hunt
Piano: Mike King

Produced By Sonny Daze
Mixed and Mastered by Sean Owens

Joe Armon-Jones - Pray (May 2021 Aquarii Records)

Joe Armon-Jones, keyboardist, composer and producer, is pushing the boundaries of his sound, blurring the lines between bass- heavy dub, contemporary club culture and his background as a pioneering force in the modern jazz scene.

Away from his solo project, he’s a member of Ezra Collective, regularly plays with Nubya Garcia, and has toured with Ata Kak and Pharoahe Monch.

1. Pray 07:39

Joe Armon-Jones - Keyboards, Vocals, Production
Luke Wynter - Bass
Morgan Simpson - Drums

Gilles Barrett - Recording Engineer
Mixed by Oli Barton-Wood
Mastered by Frank Merritt at The Carvery

Zac Carson - Something from Before (2021)

Bassist, composer, and bandleader, Zac Carson has developed a modern playing style that draws from the jazz tradition, but incorporates influences from rock, classical, and folk.

Currently based in Queens, NY, Zac is known for his lyrical playing, innovative compositions, and intricate grooves.

1. Changing Tides 03:43
2. New Beginnings 04:12
3. M's Theme 05:10
4. Same Soul 03:19
5. In Between (feat. Lindsey Lazarte) 03:31
6. Fallen Stars (feat. Marco Bolfelli) 01:08
7. March of the Fabled 08:17
8. Original B.A.M.F. (feat. Cosimo Boni) 05:38
9. Final Move 01:26
10. Five Day Crisis 02:59
11. Signal Light 05:20

Marco Bolfelli - Guitar
Zac Carson - Bass
Julia Chen - Piano
Peter Manheim - Drums
Cosimo Boni - Trumpet
Lindsey Lazarte - Vocals

Henk Zwerver: Modèles Volatils (May 2021 Casco Records)

Casco Records was initiated by bassist Raoul van der Weide in 2009 in order to document a spectre of musical co-operations with signature musicians that share the urge to create personal contributions in composed and improvised music. 

1. Skin Sound 02:41
2. Manieres de la main 02:06
3. Tomkes 05:44
4. Before the beginning 04:34
5. Mimetisme 08:37
6. L'esprit des cordes 07:03

Raoul van der Weide contrabass, crackle box, percussion
Henk Zwerver guitar

Recorded September 9 2020 at Atleier 5 in Amsterdam
Recorded and mastered by Hayden Zappa Hook
Mixed by Hayden Zappa Hook, Raoul van der Weide, Henk Zwerver
Cover art by Henk Zwerver, graphic design by Hidde Dijkstra