Jazz

S. Victor Aaron’s Mid-Year Best of 2014  (Modern and Mainstream Jazz): Steve Lehman, Jamie Saft, Matthew Shipp, Joe Beck

S. Victor Aaron’s Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Modern and Mainstream Jazz): Steve Lehman, Jamie Saft, Matthew Shipp, Joe Beck

The future of jazz looks blindingly bright.

Melissa Aldana and Crash Trio – Melissa Aldana and Crash Trio (2014)

Melissa Aldana and Crash Trio – Melissa Aldana and Crash Trio (2014)

Ready or not, here comes 2013′s Monk International Competition saxophone winner Melissa Aldana. ‘Melissa Aldana & Crash Trio’ marks a solid first step in the post-Big Win phase of her young career.

Gene Segal Quintet – Mental Images (2014)

Gene Segal Quintet – Mental Images (2014)

It was a long stretch between Gene Segal’s first and second albums but ‘Mental Images’ assures that the intervening time was time was spent.

Something Else! exclusive stream: Michael Dease, “Roppongi” from Relentless (2014)

Something Else! exclusive stream: Michael Dease, “Roppongi” from Relentless (2014)

Michael Dease’s big band take on “Roppongi” breathes new life into this little-noticed Randy Brecker gem.

Wolfgang Muthspiel, with Brian Blade and Larry Grenadier – Driftwood (2014)

Wolfgang Muthspiel, with Brian Blade and Larry Grenadier – Driftwood (2014)

Wolfgang Muthspiel has just begun with ECM but ‘Driftwood’ has the style and sonority of an old vet with the label. This sounds like the beginning of a beautiful relationship.

Something Else! sneak peek: Jeff Lorber, Chuck Loeb and Everette Harp: “Serious Business” from Jazz Funk Soul (2014)

Something Else! sneak peek: Jeff Lorber, Chuck Loeb and Everette Harp: “Serious Business” from Jazz Funk Soul (2014)

Three contemporary jazz titans have some good, clean fun with their renowned polish left intact.

Joe Magnarelli – Lookin’ Up! (2014)

Joe Magnarelli – Lookin’ Up! (2014)

‘Lookin’ Up!’ is simply damned good, no-nonsense, straight-ahead jazz carried out with veteran proficiency.

Steve Lehman Octet – Mise En Abîme (2014)

Steve Lehman Octet – Mise En Abîme (2014)

‘Mise En Abîme’ would be a stunning achievement for just about anybody else; for Steve Lehman, it’s just his still-evolving musical personality racing out beyond jazz’s frontiers and daring anyone to try and catch up.

Prolific jazz drummer Scott Amendola launches ambitious orchestral project with Nels Cline, Trevor Dunn

Prolific jazz drummer Scott Amendola launches ambitious orchestral project with Nels Cline, Trevor Dunn

Call this one the Nels Cline Singers with strings, with music by Scott Amendola.

Scott Feiner & Pandeiro Jazz – A View From Below (2014)

Scott Feiner & Pandeiro Jazz – A View From Below (2014)

Scott Feiner successfully introduces the pandeiro into electric jazz fusion to produce a breezy concoction that goes down as easy as rum punch, and is just as intoxicating.