Category Archives: Avant Garde

HEDVIG MOLLESTAD TRIO-DING DONG, YOU’RE DEAD.

Hedvig Mollestad Trio-Ding Dong, You’re Dead. Label: Rune Grammofon. Format: CD. Just nine months ago award-winning Norwegian guitarist, vocalist, bandleader and composer Hedvig Mollestad Thomassen released her critically acclaimed debut solo album Ekhidna.  By then, she was one of the leading lights of Norway’s vibrant music scene. She had founded the Hedvig Mollestad Trio in 2009 …

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CULT CLASSIC: DOUG CARN FEATURING THE VOICE OF JEAN CARN-SPIRIT OF THE NEW LAND.

Cult Classic: Doug Carn Featuring The Voice Of Jean Carn-Spirit Of The New Land. Doug Carn was one of the first artists that Gene Russell and Dick Schory signed when they founded Black Jazz Records in 1971. His debut solo album Infant Eyes was the nascent company’s third release and featured vocals from his wife …

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CULT CLASSIC FOUND: THELONIOUS MONK-PALAIS DES BEAUX ARTS 1963.

Cult Classic Found: Thelonious Monk-Palais Des Beaux Arts 1963. Nowadays, Thelonious Monk is regarded and recognised as one of the greatest ever jazz pianists. However, in the past, he wasn’t without his critics. English poet and jazz critic Phillip Larkin cruelly dismissed him as: “the elephant on the keyboard.” He didn’t appreciate Thelonious Monk’s innovative …

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MANONGO MUJICA AND TERJE EVENSEN-PARACAS RITUAL

Manongo Mujica and Terje Evensen-Paracas Ritual. Label: Buh Records. Format: 2 x LP. Manongo Mujica has been a leading light of the Peruvian avant-garde music scene since the seventies, and has met a myriad of musicians who were touring Peru. In 2003, this included Norwegian drummer, sound designer, teacher and composer Terje Evensen who was …

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CULT CLASSIC: DAWAN MUHAMMAD-DEEP STREAM.

Cult Classic: Dawan Muhammad-Deep Stream. By 1979, jazz wasn’t as popular as it was during the fifties and early sixties. That was the golden age for jazz, and saw countless classic albums released on labels like Blue Note, Verve and Impulse! These albums sold in large quantities and were profitable for the record companies that …

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SHINTARO QUINTET-EVOLUTION.

Shintaro Quintet-Evolution. Label: BBE Music. Format: CD. Ever since  the mid-fifties, many American jazz musicians journeyed to Japan where they toured and recorded albums. They were respected and treated as series  musicians, and when they recorded an album the budget was much more generous and the working conditions far better than they were used to.  …

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CULT CLASSIC: LUIZ CARLOS VINHAS-O SOM PSICODELICO DE L.C.V

Cult Classic: Luiz Carlos Vinhas-O Som Psicodélico De L.C.V. Within his native Brazil, Luiz Carlos Vinhas is remembered and regarded as one of the greatest pianists of the Bossa Nova movement. He was one of the genre’s founding fathers  and was a founder member of Bossa Três in 1961. They became one of the most important groups …

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CULT CLASSIC: SUN RA-CELESTIAL LOVE.

Cult Classic: Sun Ra-Celestial Love. Nowadays, maybe music journalists are guilty of using the words innovator and musical pioneer all too freely, but that is the perfect description of the inimitable Sun Ra. He’s quite rightly regarded as one of the true pioneers of free jazz and a truly innovative and influential musician who pushed musical boundaries …

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CULT CLASSIC: ANDREW HILL-SMOKE STACK.

Cult Classic: Andrew Hill-Smoke Stack. By the time Chicago-born pianist Andrew Hill released his sophomore album Black Fire on Blue Note Records in 1964, he was already thirty-two, and was making up for lost time. He had only started to play the piano when he was thirteen but made rapid progress. Earl Hines    spotted …

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SPIRITUAL JAZZ 13: NOW! PART TWO.

Spiritual Jazz 13: Now! Part Two. Label: Jazzman Records. Format: CD. Nowadays, there aren’t many compilation series’ that are still going strong after thirteen years and thirteen volumes. However, Jazzman Records’ critically acclaimed compilation and commercially successful Spiritual Jazz seems to be going from strength-to-strength. Recently, the label released Spiritual Jazz 13: Now! Part One and Two which are …

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CULT CLASSIC: CATAPILLA-CHANGES.

Cult Classic: Catapilla- Changes. The story of Catapilla is another case of what might have been. They were formed in West London around Christmas 1970, and signed to Vertigo Records and released two ambitious and innovative albums where they combined progressive rock with experimental fusion. Sadly, neither their 1971 debut album Catapilla, nor the followup …

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SPIRITUAL JAZZ 13: NOW! PART ONE.

Spiritual Jazz 13: Now! Part One. Label: Jazzman Records. Format: CD. Little did anyone at Jazzman Records know when they released Spiritual Jazz (Esoteric, Modal and Deep Jazz From The Underground 1968-77) in 2008, that this was the first instalment in what would become their longest-running and most successful compilation series. Over the next thirteen …

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CULT CLASSIC: DUKE ELLINGTON, CHARLIE MINGUS, MAX ROACH-MONEY JUNGLE.

Cult Classic: Duke Ellington, Charlie Mingus, Max Roach-Money Jungle. On Monday, September the ‘17th’ 1962, bassist Charles Mingus and drummer Max Roach made their way to Sound Makers Studio, in New York. The two friends were en route to a session where they would record an album with one of the giants of jazz, Duke …

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CULT CLASSIC: JACKIE MCLEAN-A FICKLE SONANCE.

Cult Classic: Jackie McLean-A Fickle Sonance. On October the ’26th’ 1961, thirty year old alto-saxophonist Jackie McLean made the now familiar journey to the Van Gelder Studio, at 445 Sylvan Avenue, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, to record a new album with his quintet. The album became A Fickle Sonance, which was released in late 1962 and is …

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CULT CLASSIC: SUN RA-CELESTIAL LOVE.

Cult Classic: Sun Ra-Celestial Love. Nowadays, maybe music journalists are guilty of using the words innovator and musical pioneer all too freely, but that is the perfect description of the inimitable Sun Ra. He’s quite rightly regarded as one of the true pioneers of free jazz and a truly innovative and influential musician who pushed musical boundaries …

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CULT CLASSIC: TEA AND SYMPHONY-AN ASYLUM FOR THE MUSICALLY INSANE.

Cult Classic: Tea and Symphony-An Asylum For The Musically Insane. When the original lineup of Tea and Symphony was founded in Birmingham, England, in the late-sixties, they were an acoustic group who have since been compared to Marc Bolan’s Tyrannosaurus Rex. The group was founded by Jeff Daw, James Langston and Nigel Phillips, but when they played …

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CULT CLASSIC: HERBIE HANCOCK-THE PRISONER.

Cult Classic: Herbie Hancock-The Prisoner. In the summer of 1968 Herbie Hancock left Miles Davis Quintet to form his own group. This was a risky move, but one he felt he had to make to develop as a composer, bandleader and pianist. During the summer of 1968 Herbie Hancock also released his sixth album for Blue Note …

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CULT CLASSIC: PHAROAH SANDERS-WELCOME TO LOVE.

Cult Classic: Pharoah Sanders-Welcome To Love. By the time Pharoah Sanders began recording Welcome To Love on the ‘17th’ of July 1990, at Studio Gimmick, Yerres, France, the American saxophonist and pioneer of free jazz was fifty, and was signed to the Dutch independent label, Timeless Records.  Pharoah Sanders debut for his new label was …

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CULT CLASSIC: SUN RA AND HIS MYTH SCIENCE ARKESTRA-WHEN ANGELS SPEAK OF LOVE.

Cult Classic: Sun Ra and His Myth Science Arkestra-When Angels Speak Of Love. One of the most prolific artist of the twentieth century was the inimitable Sun Ra, who released around 125 albums during a career that spanned six decades. One that is a render of one of   jazz’s pioneer and innovators is When Angels Speak Of Lovse. …

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THE LIFE AND TIMES OF MUSICAL PIONEER EMILIO APARICIO.

The Life and Times Of Musical Pioneer Emilio Aparicio. Nowadays, the words pioneer and innovator tend to be overused, and musicians who create truly groundbreaking music seem to be sadly, few and far between. While there are some pioneering musicians whose music continues to push musical boundaries, there are no longer as many as there once …

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