Fusion Jazz

Jonathan Rowden Group – Becoming (2014)

Jonathan Rowden Group – Becoming (2014)

There’s a spiritual unity uncommon in much of jazz today, and even rarer in a debut album.

‘Very excited about the synergy’: Jean-Luc Ponty on his new collaboration with Yes’ Jon Anderson

‘Very excited about the synergy’: Jean-Luc Ponty on his new collaboration with Yes’ Jon Anderson

Ponty has previously worked with Frank Zappa, Elton John and members of Journey and Genesis.

Henry Kaiser (Yo Miles!) and Scott Amendola (Nels Cline Singers) plan a live-in-the-studio improv record together

Henry Kaiser (Yo Miles!) and Scott Amendola (Nels Cline Singers) plan a live-in-the-studio improv record together

Two Bay Area pacesetters of improvised and avant-garde music will soon join forces.

Nicholas Payton – Numbers (2014)

Nicholas Payton – Numbers (2014)

‘Numbers’ coolly delivers Payton’s message of natural flow. It’s funky-good, angular vibe jazz.

Brandon Seabrook – Sylphid Vitalizers (2014)

Brandon Seabrook – Sylphid Vitalizers (2014)

It doesn’t matter if the experimental music is being rendered by electric guitar or banjo, Seabrook uses technology, virtuosity and a deviously fertile mind to blow the minds of anyone who comes across these recordings. ‘Sylphid Vitalizers’ expands the world of what is possible with a banjo. And guitar, too.

Something Else! sneak peek: Dirty Loops, “Wake Me Up” (2014)

Something Else! sneak peek: Dirty Loops, “Wake Me Up” (2014)

A lot of Dirty Loops’ covers have been released via YouTube, and the latest one to hit the video circuit is their more organic, more virtuosic rendition of Avicii’s Aloe Blacc-sung “Wake Me Up.”

Ada Rovatti  – Disguise (2014)

Ada Rovatti – Disguise (2014)

The tunes are solid and so are the arrangements, but there’s no disguising good playing and ‘Disguise’ has all of those things out in the clear open. A welcome return to form for Ada Rovatti.

Albert Ayler Trio – Spiritual Unity (1964, 2014 50th Anniversary Expanded Edition)

Albert Ayler Trio – Spiritual Unity (1964, 2014 50th Anniversary Expanded Edition)

The first jazz record released by the just-beginning ESP-Disk record company, ‘Spiritual Unity’ quickly put this tiny label on the map, as well as thrust Ayler to the forefront of the free jazz movement when it was released more than a year later. Even then, this record was well ahead of the frontier of jazz and remains so today.

The secret weapon in Scott Amendola’s Fade To Orange project: Mr. Bungle bassist Trevor Dunn

The secret weapon in Scott Amendola’s Fade To Orange project: Mr. Bungle bassist Trevor Dunn

Scott Amendola’s leadership and Nels Cline’s presence should make ‘Fade To Orange’ a special recording, but don’t sleep on Trevor Dunn. Every time I’ve come across a record on which he’s appeared, it’s been a rather good record. That bodes well for this one.

Something Else! sneak peek: Gerald Albright – Slam Dunk (2014)

Something Else! sneak peek: Gerald Albright – Slam Dunk (2014)

Another well-developed mixture of smooth jazz, and adult contemporary music.