Apr 12 2012
Tiny Reviews, featuring: Jeff Parker Trio Bright Light In Winter, Jenny Scheinman Mischief & Mayhem, and Dialogues Trio w/Julian Siegel Twinkle Twinkle.
Three tiny reviews, three strong albums, three recordings I keep coming back to. I love when I get to put together a Tiny Reviews post in which I’m excited about all the music, and where the artists provide music to stream (and embed), information about the recordings and personnel, and all the types of elements that make music discovery such a joyful experience.
Jeff Parker Trio – Bright Light In Winter
An astoundingly tuneful album from Jeff Parker, who continues to be one of the more thought-provoking guitarists of his generation. The trio creates an enchanting atmosphere of many interconnected anecdotes that reveal themselves, ultimately, to be a part of a much larger conversation. Just plain beautiful at times. Parker’s sound hasn’t always meshed well with my ears, whether it be one of his own albums or as part of one of his various jazz, rock, or in-between projects (ie, Tortoise, Isotope 217, etc), but this album really connected with me instantaneously, and over the course of a month, I have been coming back to this album with increasing frequency.
Your album personnel: Jeff Parker (guitar), Chris Lopes (bass), and Chad Taylor (drums).
This album possesses a warmth tough to encapsulate with words, difficult to measure with numbers, but felt so completely as to make it the most blindingly apparent sensation in the world.
Released on the Delmark Records label. Jazz from the Chicago scene.
Available on eMusic.
Jenny Scheinman – Mischief & Mayhem
Violinist Jenny Scheinman continues to develop her sound, simultaneously making it increasingly unclassifiable. Unequal parts jazz, folk, rock, Americana, avant-garde, and Other Stuff, this is an intoxicating mix of tunes that shouldn’t be passed by.
Your album personnel: Jenny Scheinman (violin), Jim Black (drums), Nels Cline (guitars), and Todd Sickafoose (bass).
Scheinman pretty much owns the heartstrings of anyone who listens to her slower tempo pieces, but the soul of her musicianship is more likely to be found in those tunes where the pulse goes up and the rhythms dash out ahead and don’t look back.
The only time there’s any road bumps on the album, it’s when the sound gets abruptly dissonant, or when Scheinman plays Frankenstein with the melody. But this is an opinion I’ve held on previous releases, so it’s probably not a bad idea to chalk up that criticism to subjective taste and let your own ears decide for themselves about that type of composition.
The album is Self-Produced. Jazz from NYC.
Available on eMusic.
Dialogues Trio w/Julian Siegel – Twinkle Twinkle
Intriguing quartet recording in which the album theme is based around the song “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.” Best tunes on the album favor the reeds in the lower registers, getting that deep sound that ranges from throaty to velvet-smooth. Sort of an avant-swing sound. Plenty of moments that, if examined under a microscope, would look suspiciously like free jazz, but in the context of the entire composition, well, the foot is probably tapping along the entire time. Song “Venus” is pure intrigue and beauty. Opening track “Waltz For Rossie” is the kind of album invitation that’s impossible to resist.
Your album personnel: Bruno Heinen (piano), Andrea Di Biase (bass), Jon Scott (drums), and guest: Julian Siegel (bass clarinet, tenor sax).
Released on the Babel Label. Jazz from the London scene.
You can stream the entire album on the label’s Bandcamp page.
Available on eMusic.
That’s it for today’s article, and the first of three (or maybe four) parts of the Tiny Reviews from this batch of new arrivals.
Here’s some language to protect emusic’s rights as the one to hire me originally to scour through the jazz new arrivals and write about the ones I like:
“New Arrivals Jazz Picks“, courtesy of eMusic.com, Inc.
© 2012 eMusic.com, Inc.
My thanks to emusic for the freelance writing gig, the opportunity to use it in this blog, and the editorial freedom to help spread the word about cool new jazz being recorded today.