Wednesday, March 30, 2016

More fave jazz albums of 2015

There's a Norwegian Christmas song that proclaims Christmas lasts until Easter. Although that silly ditty refutes said rather ludicrous claim in the following line, I'm going to run with it and use it as an excuse to post a woefully belated follow-up to my 10 fave jazz albums of 2015. Blame the delay on me recently becoming a father; the preparations for that seismic event in my life more or less turned my daily schedule upside down, leading in turn to me lagging somewhat behind on several releases from the year that was. Some of these, particularly the exciting debuts from Chris Pitsiokos Trio and Tomeka Reid Quartet, might even have affected my votes in the npr Jazz Critics Poll and El Intruso's international critics poll.

I did not post any Listening Booth/"records reviewed" updates during the latter half of 2015 nor during the first months of this year, but a few of the records that would've been included in one of those posts are listed below, with the relevant outlet listed in parentheses. I'm certain there still are a few 2015 releases that might deserve another spin or two, to be fair, and still a couple more I haven't really gotten to yet (notably Allen Lowe's In the Diaspora of the Diaspora releases). However, I'm confident in saying that the records below, in addition to my previously posted top ten (see link above), represent the cream of the crop of the new jazz albums that caught my ear over the past 12 plus months. Which, lest I be misunderstood, doesn't mean I think there weren't other noteworthy releases in 2015. Although these are listed roughly in order of, eh..., preference, I've decided to sort them into three tiers rather than making any attempt to properly rank them. I've also added 5 significant reissues/vault releases from the year that was below.

Heavy rotation:
  • Almeida / van Duynhoven / Klein: Vibrate in Sympathy (Clean Feed, reviewed for Musikkmagasinet/Klassekampen, Nov. 2nd 2015)
  • Rodrigo Amado: This Is Our Language (NotTwo Records)
  • Gard Nilssen's Acoustic Unity: Firehouse (Clean Feed)
  • Team Hegdal: Vol. 3 (Particular Recordings)
  • Tomas Fujiwara & The Hook-Up: After All Is Said (482 Music, reviewed for Jazznytt #236 2015) 
  • Chris Pitsiokos Trio: Gordian Twine (New Atlantis)
  • Made to Break: Before the Code (Trost)
  • Mikko Innanen with William Parker and Andrew Cyrille: Song For a New Decade (TUM Records)
  • Rob Mazurek / Exploding Star Orchestra: Galactic Parables: Volume 1 (Cuniform Records)
  • Sant'Anna Arresi Quintet by Evan Parker: Filu 'E Ferru (self-released)
Thoroughly enjoyed:
  • Lionel Loueke: GAÏA (Blue Note)
  • Ben Goldberg: Orphic Machine (Royal Potato Family)
  • Steve Coleman & the Council of Balance: Synovial Joints (Pi Recordings)
  • Satoko Fujii Tobira: Yamiyo Ni Karasau (Libra)
  • Tomeka Reid Quartet: Tomeka Reid Quartet (Thirsty Ear)
  • Jeremy Pelt: Tales, Musings and Other Reveries (High Note)
  • Steel Bridge Trio: Different Clocks (Relay Recordings) 
  • Rempis Percussion Quartet: Cash and Carry (Aerophonic Records) 
  • Susana Santos Silva: Impermanence (Carimba Porta-Jazz)
  • Snik: Metasediment Rock (Clean Feed, reviewed for Musikkmagasinet/Klassekampen, Sept. 28th 2015)
  • Mario Pavone: Blue Dialect (Clean Feed, reviewed for Jazznytt #235 2015) 
  • Rich Halley 4: Creating Structure (Pine Eagle Records, reviewed for Jazznytt #235 2015)
  • Nate Wooley Quintet: (Dance to) the Early Music (Clean Feed, reviewed for Musikkmagasinet/Klassekampen, Dec. 14th 2015)
  • Jackson / Berman / Strøm / Østvang: Southern Sun (Stone Floor Records)
  • Barry Altschul & 3dom Factor: Tales of the Unforseen (TUM)
  • Dave Douglas Quintet: Brazen Heart (Greenleaf Music)
  • Mark Lomax II and Eddie Bayard: #BLACKLIVESMATTER (self-released, reviewed for Musikkmagasinet/Klassekampen ...) 
  • Ran Blake: Ghost Tones: Portraits of George Russell (A-side Records)
  • William Parker: For Those Who Are, Still (3CD box set, AUM Fidelity)
  • Jacob Garchik: Ye Olde (Yestereve Records)
A further 20 notable recordings: 
  • Jónsson & More: No Way Out (Sunny Sky Records)
  • Bathysphere: Bathysphere (Driff Records, reviewed for Jazznytt #238 2016)
  • Wooley/Rempis/Niggenkemper/Corsano: From Wolves to Whales (Aerophonic Records, reviewed for Jazznytt #234 2015)
  • Matthew Shipp Quartet Declared Enemy: Our Lady of the Flowers (RogueArt)
  • ObLik: order disorder (Ormo Records. originally released in 2014, reviewed for Jazznytt #234 2015) 
  • Myra Melford: Snowy Egret (Enja) 
  • Will Mason Ensemble: Beams of the Huge Night (Amsterdam)
  • Mette Henriette: Mette Henriette (ECM) 
  • Adegoke Steve Colson: Tones For
  • Makaya McCraven: In the Moment (International Anthem)
  • Michael McNeill Trio: Flight (self-released)
  • Erik Friedlander: Oscalypso (Skipstone Records)
  • J.D. Allen Trio: Graffiti (Savant Records)
  • Matt Mitchell: Vista Accumulation (Pi Recordings) 
  • Ghost Train Orchestra:Hot Town (Accurate Records)
  • Michael Oien: And Now (Fresh Sound New Talent)
  • Amir ElSaffar: Crisis (Pi Recordings)
  • Matthew Shipp Trio: To Duke (RogueArt)
  • Devin Gray: RelativE ResonancE (Skirl)
  • The Turbine!: Entropy/Enthalpy (RougueArt)
  • Sonny Sharrock: Ask the Ages (M.O.D. Technologies) 
  • Detail: First Detail (Rune Grammofon, reviewed for Jazz #234 2015)
  • John Carter & Bobby Bradford: Self Determination Music (Flying Dutchman/BNG)
  • Ornette Coleman: Science Fiction (Columbia/ORG)
  • Anthony Braxton: Trio & Duet (Delmark/Sackville)

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