Articles by: S. Victor Aaron

Toxic: Mat Walerian, Matthew Shipp, William Parker – This Is Beautiful Because We Are Beautiful People (2017)

Toxic: Mat Walerian, Matthew Shipp, William Parker – This Is Beautiful Because We Are Beautiful People (2017)

”This Is Beautiful Because We Are Beautiful People’ is a set of performances that succeed because the Toxic musicians place all trust on instinct and the instincts of others.

Kate Gentile, “Alchemy Melt (With Tilt)” from Mannequins (2017): Something Else! exclusive stream

Kate Gentile, “Alchemy Melt (With Tilt)” from Mannequins (2017): Something Else! exclusive stream

“Alchemy Melt (With Tilt)” is an album’s worth of ideas from a single song and there are a dozen other songs on Kate Gentile’s ‘Mannequins.’

Zem Audu – Spirits (2017)

Zem Audu – Spirits (2017)

The international element is strong on ‘Spirit’ like a lot of jazz albums these days but Zem Audu is long beyond that concept of throwing together different ingredients and has mastered making his stew simmer with sophistication.

Gato Libre – Neko (2017)

Gato Libre – Neko (2017)

Through death comes transformation. Gato Libre is a band whose body has changed, but its original heart perseveres.

Jeremy Rose, “Afensou” from Within and Without (2017): Something Else! exclusive stream

Jeremy Rose, “Afensou” from Within and Without (2017): Something Else! exclusive stream

Intelligent, driven and mellifluous, Rose’s lifelong relentless pursuit of excellence within jazz comes out on ‘Within and Without,’ starting with the attractively propulsive number “Afensou.”

Ivo Perelman + Matthew Shipp, with Andrew Cyrille – Art of Perelman-Shipp: Dione (2017)

Ivo Perelman + Matthew Shipp, with Andrew Cyrille – Art of Perelman-Shipp: Dione (2017)

This album seductively demonstrates a strong continuity of the free jazz heritage from its mid-’60s flowering to guys like Ivo Perelman, Matthew Shipp and Andrew Cyrille.

Jack DeJohnette, Larry Grenadier, John Medeski, John Scofield – Hudson (2017)

Jack DeJohnette, Larry Grenadier, John Medeski, John Scofield – Hudson (2017)

The combination of Jack DeJohnette, John Scofield, John Medeski and Larry Grenadier is capable of so much; but ‘Hudson’ delivers in that it doesn’t kowtow to expectations of what kind of music these four legends should make.

Ben Goldberg School – Vol 1: The Humanities (2017)

Ben Goldberg School – Vol 1: The Humanities (2017)

As a composite of ideas and influences introduced elsewhere, ‘Vol 1: The Humanities’ is a fine entry point to Ben Goldberg’s catalog that dilutes none of his expansive artfulness.

Björkenheim, Sopko, James, Laswell, Yamaki (Inaugural Sound Clash [for the 2 Americas]) – Against the Empire of Alternative Facts (2017)

Björkenheim, Sopko, James, Laswell, Yamaki (Inaugural Sound Clash [for the 2 Americas]) – Against the Empire of Alternative Facts (2017)

Bill Laswell and the cast of characters assembled for this 57-minute jam aren’t the ordinary type.

Matthew Shipp – Invisible Touch At Taktlos Zürich (2017)

Matthew Shipp – Invisible Touch At Taktlos Zürich (2017)

It becomes clear on solo live performances such as the one captured on ‘Invisible Touch At Taktlos Zürich’ that the more Matthew Shipp is exposed, the more fascinating is his music.