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Lisa Germano – No Elephants (2013)

Lisa Germano’s spare fragility, her whispery confidentiality, would come off as too precious if she didn’t pay such great attention to the craftsmanship of her writing. Instead, her new album has enough trenchant, note-perfect images to fill a good-sized lit mag

Otis Taylor – My World Is Gone (2013)

Otis Taylor – My World Is Gone (2013)

Otis Taylor’s blues aren’t conventional blues. They’re aren’t good-time blues. Banjo in hand, he imbues them musically with an out-of-time, off-kilter sound — and then runs right at life’s bitter truths.

Chris Potter – The Sirens (2013)

Combined with his own vast facility and adventurous spirit, stints with Steely Dan, Dave Holland, Paul Motian and most recently, Pat Metheny’s Unity Band have made Chris Potter one of the best known and accoladed saxophonists of his generation.

The Friday Morning Listen: Talking Heads – Fear Of Music (1979)

The Friday Morning Listen: Talking Heads – Fear Of Music (1979)

A while back I started to read David Byrne’s book How Music Works. It’s a terrific read, with Byrne talking up everything from the many functions of music in society to his time creating music with the Talking Heads as well as his own solo career.

‘Wonderful, and inspiring': Robben Ford on his new album, Miles Davis, Joni Mitchell, George Harrison … and Kiss?

‘Wonderful, and inspiring': Robben Ford on his new album, Miles Davis, Joni Mitchell, George Harrison … and Kiss?

Do-anything guitarist Robben Ford is hailing his forthcoming album Bringing It Back Home as “my favorite thing that I’ve done in a long time,” and that’s certainly saying something.

Forgotten series: Head East – The Best Of Head East (2001)

One can never accuse Head East of not paying their dues. Formed in 1969, the Illinois based band kicked about the local live circuit for half a decade before finally translating their music onto vinyl.

Recalling five of Levon Helm’s most stirring moments: ‘The loamy voiced, rhythmic heart of the Band’

Recalling five of Levon Helm’s most stirring moments: ‘The loamy voiced, rhythmic heart of the Band’

Sunday gives us another chance to remember Levon Helm, as Elton John, Mavis Staples and others pay tribute to the rail-jumping, loamy voiced, rhythmic heart of the Band during the annual Grammy awards.

Yelena Eckemoff Trio – Glass Song (2013)

Russian-born Yelena Eckemoff is a classically trained concert pianist who has more recently in her career taken on jazz, but has done so strictly on her terms.

The Joy Formidable – Wolf’s Law (2013)

North Wales’ The Joy Formidable seems to have the knack for kicking off new years with panache. In January 2011, they released The Big Roar to considerable acclaim. In 2013, Wolf’s Law made its way into the public consciousness.

The Monkees, Fats Domino, Del Shannon, others – Action!: Songs Of Tommy Boyce & Bobby Hart (2012)

The Monkees, Fats Domino, Del Shannon, others – Action!: Songs Of Tommy Boyce & Bobby Hart (2012)

For those not in the know, Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart were one of the 1960s’ most successful songwriting teams. Best remembered for the tasty tunes they supplied the Monkees, they also achieved a respectable round of fame on their own