Whack Jazz

Matt Nelson, Tim Dahl, Nick Podgurski – GRID (2017)

Matt Nelson, Tim Dahl, Nick Podgurski – GRID (2017)

Describing ‘GRID’ as “guttural” is a modest way to put it, but scary music created on the fly has rarely sounded so sweet.

John Zorn’s Simulacrum – The Garden of Earthly Delights (2017)

John Zorn’s Simulacrum – The Garden of Earthly Delights (2017)

‘The Garden of Earthly Delights’ celebrates Hieronymus Bosch, whose surreal paintings seem to give John Zorn’s Simulacrum permission to follow similar patterns.

Ted Milton, of Blurt: Something Else! Interview

Ted Milton, of Blurt: Something Else! Interview

Ted Milton’s work with Blurt has been branded “jazz,” “post-punk,” “dance” and “experimental,” but there isn’t a pencil-pusher name to define an act like this.

Peter Van Huffel’s Gorilla Mask – Iron Lung (2017)

Peter Van Huffel’s Gorilla Mask – Iron Lung (2017)

The mission on Gorilla Mask’s third long player ‘Iron Lung’ is much the same as before: direct, confrontational thrash-jazz that’s more purposeful, unpredictable and just plain fun.

Trouble Kaze – June (2017)

Trouble Kaze – June (2017)

The sextet Trouble Kaze and their debut album ‘June’ is an inspired way to extend and expand on the ideas first put forward by the Japanese/French quartet Kaze.

Harriet Tubman, with Wadada Leo Smith – Araminta (2017)

Harriet Tubman, with Wadada Leo Smith – Araminta (2017)

In what will likely go down as one of the best uncategorizable releases of the year, Harriet Tubman’s ‘Araminta’ is a swaggering statement from four musicians who thrive on taking chances.

Mary Halvorson and Sylvie Courvoisier – Crop Circles (2017)

Mary Halvorson and Sylvie Courvoisier – Crop Circles (2017)

A mere two months following yet another highly thought-of ensemble record, guitarist/composer Mary Halvorson has returned.

Dialectical Imagination – The Angle and the Brute Sing Songs of Rapture (2017)

Dialectical Imagination – The Angle and the Brute Sing Songs of Rapture (2017)

Dialectical Imagination’s ‘The Angle and the Brute Sing Songs of Rapture’ is a presentation of music that’s informed by deft musicianship but rides on waves of passion.

Ballister – Slag (2017)

Ballister – Slag (2017)

Ballister’s ‘Slag’ is free-form music – played that way and at its best.

Satoko Fujii Orchestra Toyko – Peace (2017)

Satoko Fujii Orchestra Toyko – Peace (2017)

As a celebration of the Satoko Fujii Orchestra Toyko’s fallen guitarist Kelly Churko, ‘Peace’ couldn’t be any more true to his memory and the fearlessness he brought to this band.