Raves

The Latest Music We Like

Troy Roberts – Tales & Tones

(Inner Circle Music) Tales & Tones is the impressive latest recording from saxophonist Troy Roberts. Roberts is adroit in an array of musical moods here with an engaging tone that shines through on every tune, whether it’s a ballad or a swing feel. The mostly original compositions on the effort are outstanding, as are the… Continue Reading

Jared Sims – Change of Address

(Ropeadope) Change of Address is the fifth recording as a leader from baritone saxophonist Jared Sims. The production is an outstanding display of Sims’ versatility, on a recording that leans in the funk-organ groove direction. The saxophonist is the pulse of the recording, playing with both, power and tremendous dexterity on the large horn. Engaging… Continue Reading

Steve Khan – Backlog

(Tone Center) Backlog is guitarist Steve Khan’s fifth recording since his return from a decade-long absence and a real pleasure to hear. The production filters the work of some of jazz’s great players through Latin-rhythm and percussive rhythms. The body-moving grooves are derived from compositions by Thelonious Monk, Greg Osby, Bobby Hutcherson Stevie Wonder and… Continue Reading

Sidney Jacobs – First Man

(Baby Chubs Records) Vocalist Sidney Jacobs brings a contemporary flair to an approach that has a connection to the great vocal improvisers of our time. First Man, his second recorded outing, is an eclectic showcase for his talents as a singer, composer and producer. There’s a compelling freshness to his approach, with a nice mix… Continue Reading

Virgina Schenck – Aminata Moseka: An Abbey Lincoln Tribute

(Airborne Ecstasy) Singer Virginia Schenck’s latest is a wonderful homage to the great Abbey Lincoln.  Aminata Moseka: An Abbey Lincoln Tribute avoids the attempt at evoking the spirit of Abbey’s approach, but instead presents her compositions from a different perspective with a new voice. Clever arrangements and Schenck’s own way into a song lend themselves… Continue Reading

The Greg Hatza Organization – Diggin Up My Roots

(Record Label) Organist Greg Hatza’s latest is a fantastic tribute to the music he grew up hearing as a child in Reading, PA. Diggin Up My Roots is Hatza’s take on some classic r&b and blues he heard on a jukebox in the restaurant owned by his father. The band does the classics by the… Continue Reading

Miroslav Vitous – Ziljabu Nights: Live at Theater Gütersloh

(Deutsche Media Productions) Bassist-composer Miroslav Vitous’s latest is a journey through structured music that sounds incredibly improvised. Ziljabu Nights: Live at Theater Gütersloh features Vitous and his band painting large musical murals before a live audience in Gütersloh, Germany. The other players on the productions are tenor saxophonist Gary Campbell, tenor and soprano saxophonist Robert… Continue Reading

Ron Boustead – Unlikely Valentine

(Art Rock Music) Singer Ron Boustead offers his entertaining take on love stories of songs with this effort. Unlikely Valentine is a nice mix of original tunes and clever twists on some less-traveled standards. Boustead brings a humorous flavor to a number of the tunes on the mostly upbeat production. The ballads are equally nice,… Continue Reading

The Baylor Project – The Journey

(Be A Light) The Journey is exquisite debut of The Baylor Project. The husband-wife duo of drummer Marcus Baylor and vocalist Jean Baylor brings a wealth of experience from work with an array of artists, which serves this production incredibly well. The vocal delivery of Jean Baylor is impeccable. The arrangements are the tunes here,… Continue Reading

Mike Casey – The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door

(Mike Casey) With The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door, saxophonist Mike Casey makes an impressive debut. The recording puts you right in the room for a set that is brimming with the creative intensity that is enhanced by the presence of a live audience. There’s a gritty and raw improvisational feel in… Continue Reading