Category Archives: Improv

LARAAJI-MOON PIANO.

Laraaji-Moon Piano. Label: All Saints Records. Format: LP. When Laraaji recorded two albums  of spiritual keyboard improvisations at the First Unitarian Church, Brooklyn, on December the ’10th’  and ’11th’ 2018 he was fulfilling a lifetime’s ambition. He had always wanted to return the piano which was the first instrument he learned to play growing up …

Continue reading

DEUTSCHE ELEKTRONISCHE MUSIK 4: EXPERIMENTAL GERMAN ROCK AND ELECTRONIC MUSIC 1971-83.

Deutsche Elektronische Musik 4: Experimental German Rock and Electronic Music 1971-83. Label: Soul Jazz Records. Format: CD. Release Date: ‘16th’ October 2020. Nowadays, the period between 1968 and the early eighties is regarded as a golden period for German music, and saw groundbreaking artists and groups like Amon Düül, Can, Cluster, Deuter, Faust, Harmonia, Neu!, …

Continue reading

SPIRITUAL JAZZ 12: IMPULSE!

Spiritual Jazz 12: Impulse! Label: Jazzman Records. Format: 2CD. 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 twelve years, they’ve …

Continue reading

CULT CLASSIC: THE NAZGÛL-THE NAZGÛL.

Cult Classic: The Nazgûl-The Nazgûl. Pyramid Records was founded by forty-year old British expat Robin Page, in 1972. By then , he  was one of the leading lights  in the Fluxus arts movement . He had moved from London, England to Cologne, in Germany, in 1969, and the city had been his home ever since. However, Robin Page …

Continue reading

IDRIS ACKAMOOR AND THE PYRAMIDS- SHAMAN!

Idris Ackamoor and The Pyramids-Shaman! Label: Strut. Nowadays, not many groups are still together after forty-seven years. Many groups call time on their career after three or four albums citing “artistic differences” but are keen to reassure their fans that they’re “still friends” and that the band had “run its course.” This has happened to some of …

Continue reading

LARAAJI-SUN PIANO.

Laraaji-Sun Piano. Label: All Saints Records. Format: LP. On the album cover to his new album Sun Piano, which was released by All Saints Records, Laraaji describes playing the piano as: “my music therapy.” This is something the seventy-seven year has been doing since 1953, when he was just ten and living in New Jersey.  …

Continue reading

GREG FOAT-SYMPHOMIE PACIFIQUE.

Greg Foat-Symphonie Pacifique. Label: Strut Release Date: ‘3rd’ July 2020. Prolific and versatile are words that describe London-based Greg Foat, who nowadays, is regarded as one of Britain’s top jazz pianists and composers.  His career began back in the noughties, and in 2009, he founded The Greg Foat Group who went on to release five …

Continue reading

HEDVIG MOLLESTAD-EKHIDNA.

Hedvig Mollestad-Ekhidna. Label: Rune Grammofon. Format: CD. In May 2018, award-winning Norwegian guitarist, vocalist, bandleader and composer Hedvig Mollestad was thirty-six and one of the leading lights of the vibrant Nordic music scene. Her band the Hedvig Mollestad Trio had already released five albums and had already recorded their sixth album Smells Funny. Despite the …

Continue reading

AKSAK MABOUL-FIGURES.

Aksak Maboul-Figures. Label: Crammed Discs.  Nowadays, there aren’t many bands that are still together and releasing new albums after five decades. The same can be said of record labels founded in the seventies. Sadly, bands and record labels aren’t enjoying the same longevity in the modern music business.  All too often, bands release a couple …

Continue reading

ANDREAS ROYSUM ENSEMBLE-ANDREAS ROYSUM ENSEMBLE.

Andreas Røysum Ensemble-Andreas Røysum Ensemble. Label: Motvind Records. Over the last decade, the Norwegian jazz scene  has been thriving, and today is one of the most vibrant in Europe as a new generation of up-and-coming musicians follow their dreams to make a living playing jazz. They hope to follow in the footsteps of Jan Garbarek, …

Continue reading

ERLEND APNESETH-FRAGMENTARIUM.

Erlend Apneseth-Fragmentarium. Label: Hubro Music. When the Erlend Apneseth Trio recorded their third album Salika, Molika they were joined by top Norwegian accordionist Frode Haltli as they fused folk and experimental improv and electronic music. The result was an ambitious and  groundbreaking album that was hailed as a  gamechanger when it was released to critical …

Continue reading

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

Sun Ra and His Myth Science Arkestra-When Angels Speak Of Love. Label:  Cosmic Myth Records. 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. Over the last few years, dozens  of these albums have been reissued by …

Continue reading

CULT CLASSIC: AKSAK MABOUL-UN PEU L’AME DES BANDITS.

Cult Classic: Aksak Maboul-Un Peu de L’âme Des Bandits. Nearly three years after releasing their seminal avant pop album, Onze Danses Pour Combattre la Migraine in the summer of 1977,  Aksak Maboul returned with their much-anticipated 1980 sophomore album Un Peu de L’âme Des Bandits. It was the first album Aksak Maboul released on Marc …

Continue reading

LUMAN DRONES-UMBRA.

Lumen Drones-Umbra. Label: Hubro Music. Four years after Lumen Drones released their critically acclaimed eponymous debut album on ECM Records in late-2015, Nils Økland, Per Steinar Lie and Ørjan Haaland recently return with their much-anticipated followup Umbra, which was released on Hubro Music. Umbra is an epic album that doesn’t disappoint and marks the welcome …

Continue reading

CULT CLASSIC: SUN RA AND HIS ARKESTRA-THE OTHER SIDE OF THE STREET.

Cult Classic: Sun Ra and His Arkestra-The Other Side Of The Street. Nowadays, music journalists are guilty of using the words innovator and pioneer for too freely, but that is the perfect description of the inimitable Sun Ra. He’s   now regarded as one of the true pioneers of free jazz and a truly innovative …

Continue reading

CULT CLASSIC: MOUVEMENTS-MOUVEMENTS.

Cult Classic: Mouvements-Mouvements. In the late-sixties, self-taught guitarist and jazz aficionado Christian Oestreicher, who was later described as: “a savage in the era of twist and free jazz,” met artist and painter Richard Reimann who was famous for his optical art, at the renowned Aurora art gallery in Geneva, Switzerland. This was the start of …

Continue reading

CULT CLASSIC: TOHRU AIZAWA QUARTET-TACHIBANA.

Cult Classic: Tohru Aizawa Quartet-Tachibana.  For many connoisseurs of jazz, especially seventies J-Jazz, one little known private pressing is their holy grail, and everywhere they go is the album they search for. There’s always the hope that in a backstreet record shop, antique centre or thrift store in a town or city somewhere in the …

Continue reading

MOGWAI-TEN RAPID (COLLECTED RECORDINGS 1996-1997).

Mogwai-Ten Rapid (Collected Recordings 1996–1997). Label: Rock Action Records. Nowadays, there aren’t many bands that stay together twenty-eight years, and release thirteen studio albums, five soundtracks and two live albums. There’s also the small matter of two remix albums and the four compilations that the Glasgow-based band Mogwai have released. The very first album that Mogwai …

Continue reading

LOTHAR OHLMEIER, ISAMBARD KHROUSTALIOV, RUDI FISCHERLEHNER-HYPERTIDE OVER KIRIBATI.

Lothar Ohlmeier, Isambard Khroustaliov, Rudi Fischerlehner-Hypertide Over Kiribati. Label: Not Applicable Recordings. Each week, a vast amount of new albums are released into the global musical marketplace by artists and bands from every corner of the world. This should mean that there’s a constant stream on ambitious and innovative music being released. Sadly, that isn’t …

Continue reading

BLACK MOON CIRCLE-THE STORY SO FAR.

Black Moon Circle-The Story So Far. Just seven years ago, brothers Øyvin and Vemund Engan founded the psychedelic space rock band Black Moon Circle, and since then, this talented band from Trondheim, in Norway, have released seven  albums.  Not many bands average an album a year, but not many bands have the talent that Black Moon Circle have. Their story begins seven …

Continue reading