Whack Jazz

S. Victor Aaron’s Best of 2017 (Part 3 of 4, Avant Garde + Experimental): Sexmob, Mary Halvorson, Brandon Seabrook

S. Victor Aaron’s Best of 2017 (Part 3 of 4, Avant Garde + Experimental): Sexmob, Mary Halvorson, Brandon Seabrook

Here’s the part of the annual Best of 2017 lists that’s the most fun to pull together.

Elliott Sharp, with Mary Halvorson  and Marc Ribot – Err Guitar (2017)

Elliott Sharp, with Mary Halvorson and Marc Ribot – Err Guitar (2017)

‘Err Guitar’ by Elliott Sharp, Mary Halvorson and Marc Ribot is three masters of the outside guitar pushing each other to go even further out, making this a notably delirious entry in the catalogs of all three.

Albert Ayler Quartet – Copenhagen Live 1964 (2017)

Albert Ayler Quartet – Copenhagen Live 1964 (2017)

Albert Ayler’s violent alchemy of Africa and Europe imbues ‘Copenhagen Live 1964’ with historical importance because more than fifty years hence, these ideas put into practice sound as radical today as they did back then.

Kelly Moran – Bloodroot (2017)

Kelly Moran – Bloodroot (2017)

Kelly Moran’s ‘Bloodroot’ is not your common minimalist record, and even those who hadn’t embraced that style of music could be drawn to the strange peacefulness wrung from a prepared piano.

Lina Allemano Four – Sometimes Y (2017)

Lina Allemano Four – Sometimes Y (2017)

One thing that’s immediately clear about ‘Sometimes Y’ by the Lina Allemano Four is that there is no less zest here for taking chances and playing in the moment.

Dialectical Imagination – The Angel and the Brute Sing Songs of Wrath (2017)

Dialectical Imagination – The Angel and the Brute Sing Songs of Wrath (2017)

Informed by facility and guided by emotion, Dialectical Imagination continues to do things their way with ‘The Angel and the Brute Sing Songs of Wrath.’

Satoko Fujii Orchestra New York – Fukushima (2017)

Satoko Fujii Orchestra New York – Fukushima (2017)

feature photo: Bryan Murray Now boasting a remarkable ten albums over twenty years, Satoko Fujii Orchestra New York today takes another step forward with Fukushima (Libra Records), the first new recordings from Satoko Fujii’s American large ensemble project since 2014’s Shiki. The best big band leaders know how to exploit a large ensemble akin to a single, giant instrument, withRead More

Dan Blacksberg – Radiant Others (2017)

Dan Blacksberg – Radiant Others (2017)

Dan Blacksberg’s ‘Radiant Others’ is a fresh, nontraditional take on traditional melodies that happens to be Jewish in origin. You don’t need to be an ethnomusicologist to enjoy this one.

Crown Larks – Population (2017)

Crown Larks – Population (2017)

Often compared to psychedelic post-rock outfits like Broadcast and Oneida, Chicago’s own Crown Larks can be thought of as jazz’s answer to Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger, or indie rock’s answer to Ornette Coleman’s Prime Time, depending on

Denny Zeitlin and George Marsh – Expedition (2017)

Denny Zeitlin and George Marsh – Expedition (2017)

‘Expedition’ continues a long, provocative journey taken by Denny Zeitlin and George Marsh along the innovative frontier of jazz.

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