- Reid Anderson – Foxy – The Vastness of Space
- Julian Priester – Prologue Love, Love – Love, Love
- Michael Jefry Stevens Quartet – Sadness of the Madness – For The Children
- Bob Brookmeyer New Art Orchestra – Idyll – New Works (Celebration)
- Jan Garbarek – Song of Space – Sart
- Rudresh Mahanthappa – The Preserver – Mother Tongue
- Chico Freeman and Arthur Blythe – You Are Too Beautiful – Luminous
- With Anderson on the bass we have Ben Monder on guitar. Altoist Andrew D’Angelo and tenorist Bill McHenry comprising the frontline, with Marlon Browden behind the drums. This is the lineup that Anderson performed with live during the course of 2000.
- An album by American jazz trombonist and composer Julian Priester Pepo Mtoto recorded in 1973 and released on the ECM label. The two lengthy improvisations on the album are mostly on one-chord repetitive rhythmic vamps stated by the bass, featuring sound explorations and plenty of electronics. Only on the last half of the second medley does Priester himself emerge a bit from the electronic sounds. The influence of Bitches Brew but also Herbie Hancock’s group and Weather Report is clear The music develops slowly, but listeners with patience will enjoy the blending of the many different voices in this unusual musical stew
- This release in the Cadence Jazz Historical Series (recorded in February 1995) is full of surprises, none greater than the successful intertwining of a former Jazz Messenger with one of the premier free-jazz rhythm teams. Saxophonist David Schnitter isn’t the best-known of the Messengers tenormen, having joined the outfit during the comparative down-time of the 1970s. But since then he has built a reputation as a solid, reliable improviser. Dominic Duval and Jay Rosen often function as the “house rhythm section” of sorts for CIMP Records, Cadence Jazz’ sister label. Michael Jefry Stevens, the leader, pianist and composer, is well-respected for his facility in crossing jazz’ many divides. The four men’s unique pedigrees come together exceptionally well in this fine release.
- This is the recording debut of the New Art Orchestra, an 18-piece ensemble created and directed by Bob Brookmeyer. It was formed in Lubeck, Germany as a new jazz project for the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival, founded by Leonard Bernstein in 1986. The musicians are largely from Germany, with two Americans and one each from Belgium, Norway and the Netherlands. “I collect young musicians as I tour and teach,” says Brookmeyer, “for they are the future and that is what I am interested in. The players in the NAO are wonderful to work with and have a fresh attitude toward making music. The feeling is unlike anything I’ve experienced in my life. We were together for three summers at the Festival and decided that it was too good to let it go, so the first step was this recording, aided by a 20,000 Mark prize from RTL, the German TV station.”
- Garbarek’s second album for ECM found him conducting further explorations in two separate directions. On the one hand, his playing and, to some extent, his composing were becoming increasingly avant-garde, a path which would culminate in the ensuing Tryptikon disc. His stark cries clearly owed something to the then burgeoning AACM movement as well as to European musicians like Peter Brotzmann. At the same time, pieces like the title track here nodded toward the contemporary jazz-rock experiments of Miles Davis. This was also the first collaboration with pianist Bobo Stenson who would become a regular associate of Garbarek’s in upcoming years. His presence fills out the group sound quite nicely and serves as an agreeable counterpoint to Terje Rypdal’s playing, which, at this point, was still experimental and imaginative. A strong recording and, along with all of the other early ECM Garbarek releases, recommended for fans who came upon him much later in his career.
- Mother Tongue is the 2014 album from Indian-American composer and alto saxophonist Rudresh Mahanthappa. Mother Tongue is Rudresh’s musical attempt to dispel the mistaken notion that India, with its multiple cultures, religions and hundreds of spoken languages and dialects, is one homogenous culture. In response to having been repeatedly asked: “Do you speak Indian?” or “Do you speak Hindu?” Rudresh has created compositions that are directly based on melodic transcriptions of various Indian-Americans’ indignant responses in their native Indian tongues to these questions. Rudresh, Vijay Iyer (piano), Francois Moutin (bass), and Elliot Humberto Kavee (drums), interpret and reconfigure seven languages of India through their own musical language.
- Recorded live 25th February 1989 at Ronnie Scott’s Club. The backing trio is John Hicks, Donald Pate and Victor Jones.