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647 reviews/ratings
LOUIS ARMSTRONG - The Louis Armstrong Story, Volume I: Louis Armstrong And His Hot Five Classic (1920s) Jazz | review permalink
MILES DAVIS - Agharta Classic Fusion | review permalink
EARTH WIND & FIRE - Gratitude Jazz Related RnB | review permalink
HERBIE HANCOCK - Speak Like a Child Post Bop | review permalink
FRANK ZAPPA - One Size Fits All (as Frank Zappa And The Mothers Of Invention) Jazz Related Rock | review permalink
HERBIE HANCOCK - Crossings Classic Fusion | review permalink
PARLIAMENT - Mothership Connection Funk | review permalink
COUNT BASIE - Count Basie and his Orchestra Big Band | review permalink
HERBIE HANCOCK - Thrust Funk Jazz | review permalink
SUN RA - Angels and Demons at Play Progressive Big Band | review permalink
SUN RA - Atlantis Avant-Garde Jazz | review permalink
SANTANA - Santana Latin Rock/Soul | review permalink
FUNKADELIC - America Eats Its Young Funk | review permalink
MILES DAVIS - Live At The Fillmore East Classic Fusion | review permalink
HERBIE HANCOCK - V.S.O.P. Post Bop | review permalink
MILES DAVIS - Get Up With It Classic Fusion | review permalink
JIMI HENDRIX - Electric Ladyland (Jimi Hendrix Experience) Jazz Related Rock
MILES DAVIS - Miles Smiles Post Bop | review permalink
MILES DAVIS - Nefertiti Post Bop | review permalink

See all reviews/ratings

Jazz Genre Nb. Rated Avg. rating
1 Classic Fusion 86 3.72
2 Avant-Garde Jazz 51 3.96
3 Hard Bop 41 3.87
4 Big Band 34 3.87
5 (Post-70s) Eclectic Fusion 32 3.77
6 Post Bop 32 4.17
7 Soul Jazz 32 3.38
8 World Fusion 30 3.63
9 Jazz Related Rock 28 3.77
10 Jazz Related RnB 24 3.42
11 Funk Jazz 23 3.59
12 Bop 21 4.00
13 Nu Jazz 21 3.38
14 Funk 20 3.92
15 Pop Jazz/Crossover 19 2.68
16 Progressive Big Band 18 4.08
17 Exotica 17 3.41
18 DJ/Electronica Jazz 16 3.28
19 Third Stream 15 3.87
20 Jazz Soundtracks 11 3.55
21 Cool Jazz 11 3.95
22 Dub Fusion 9 4.00
23 Post-Fusion Contemporary 9 3.50
24 Latin Jazz 7 3.93
25 Jazz Related Blues 7 3.64
26 Latin Rock/Soul 6 3.75
27 Vocal Jazz 6 3.67
28 Swing 5 4.00
29 Jazz Related Improv/Composition 5 3.40
30 Acid Jazz 4 3.50
31 21st Century Modern 2 4.50
32 Classic (1920s) Jazz 2 4.50
33 Dixieland 1 3.50
34 Afro-Cuban Jazz 1 4.50
35 Bossa Nova 1 3.50

Latest Albums Reviews

SUN RA The Sub-Dwellers

Album · 2011 · Avant-Garde Jazz
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There was a time when Sun Ra recordings were rare and fans and collectors had to look far and wide in obscure places to locate them. Somewhere in the mid 80s, all this changed as certain small labels found there was a market for Ra’s strange music, and thus began an outpouring of all sorts of previously unreleased Sun Ra music, some of it of fairly dubious quality, which leads us to the 2011 archival release of “The Sub-Dwellers” on a vinyl LP. “The Sub-Dwellers” consists of recordings of Sun Ra reciting his poetry in a very low-fi setting. Hardcore Ra fans may find this interesting, but probably not too many others will.

Side one of “The Sub-Dwellers” was recorded in 1982, while side two was recorded in 1966. On side one Ra’s voice is backed by incidental music played by synthesizers and the whole orchestra. The sound is ultra low-fi as it sounds like the music is coming from a portable cassette player that Ra may be holding while he recites his words. On side two the accompaniment seems to come from two or three performers on African instruments. The sound on side two is even more low-fi than the previous side. The poetry itself is an acquired taste, sometimes very clever and profound, while other times it seems like Ra may be pulling our leg. Much of Ra’s content has similarities to ancient holy books like the Bible, Koran or I Ching, other times he seems to delight in word play, almost child-like in its repetitive petulance, like Dr Suess run through a LSD blender.

There is definitely an audience for this future obscurity. First of course are fans of Ra’s poetry and collectors who need everything Ra ever recorded. Also, there are those who seek particularly odd recordings and low-fi field recordings who will find this record to be a treasure. Finally, home recording artists looking for s spoken word snippet to go on their latest spaced out groove will find plenty of quotable quotes on “the Sub-Dwellers”.


Album · 2016 · Latin Jazz
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Jason McGuire is a native Texan who, over the years, has built a strong international following for his fiery flamenco guitar style. In the past, Jason has usually worked for other artists and dance companies, but with his new group, Terceto Kali, McGuire shows he is ready to step forward as a band leader and composer of considerable skill. Although rooted in flamenco, Terceto Kali’s music features so many diverse influences that it could easily be considered a new genre of flamenco-fusion. Although most of us are used to hearing flamenco performed with guitar and handclaps, McGuire builds more of a jazz combo type effect by adding Paul Martin Sounder on bass and Maruion Aldana on drums. This trio’s sound is more similar to modern post bop and Latin fusion than what we would normally expect from a flamenco artist.

Along with the complex and nuanced rhythms of flamenco, McGuire and his group pull from a variety of other rhythms based in Latin America and the US. “Mira Mira” finds the rhythm section hitting a rumba groove while McGuire floats his improvised melodies on top. On “Tico Paco”, McGuire pays tribute to his idol, Paco de Lucia, with a traditional alegrias, which is then transformed with elements of gospel and RnB. “Romance” is a delicately performed melodic ballad with hints of modern folk and neo-soul. On closing cut. “Motivation”, Jason and his group play a free improv avant-garde form of flamenco, possibly a first, and it works surprisingly well.

Jason is considered one of the top flamenco guitarists today, and his rapid and precise technique will not disappoint anyone, but this is flamenco music for a brand new era. McGuire has built an imaginative musical world on Terceto Kali, a world where flamenco is being taken places that it has never gone to before.

10000 VARIOUS ARTISTS Blue Note's Three Decades Of Jazz - Volume 1 - 1959 - 1969 (aka A Decade Of Jazz Volume Three (1959-1969))

Boxset / Compilation · 1969 · Hard Bop
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(This review is dedicated to Bobby Hutcherson, whose brilliant vibraphone playing on this record helps propel Eric Dolphy’s “Out to Lunch”) If you like to frequent places where used vinyl is sold, then you are likely to run into these Blue Note collections that came out in the late 60s and re-issued in the mid-70s. If you see the collection featured in this review, this one that features tracks from 1959 to 1969, then you will want to pick this one up because it is a treasure trove of classic 60s jazz cuts. First you get a heaping helping of funky hard bop soul jazz, including masterpieces of the genre such as Lee Morgan’s “Sidewinder”, Horace Silver’s “Song for my Father”, Jimmy Smith’s “Back at the Chicken Shack” and Kenny Burrell’s “Chitlins Con Carne”. As if that wasn’t enough, Blue Note tops off all that soul with the always interesting outside work of Eric Dolphy’s “Out to Lunch” and Ornette Coleman’s “European Echoes”, plus the exotic sounds of Donald Byrd’s “Christo Redenter”. Almost every cut on here is a genre defining pillar that continues to be important and enjoyable to this day. Possibly the only track that might not belong is Ike Quebec’s almost maudlin “Blue and Sentimental”, but it too is saved by Grant Green’s jaggedy guitar work.

I would imagine there were some at Blue Note who might have wanted to separate the more experimental fare from the other tracks, but fortunately they didn’t do that. Instead, everything is lumped together which gives the album a much more interesting flow as abstract pieces segue way into blues and back again. If you have been into jazz for very long at all, then you probably already recognize at least three or four of these tracks. Since re-issues of this album can be found at a low price, pick it up, this is an excellent overview of 60s jazz, albeit with an accent on soul jazz/hard bop, but with enough other stuff thrown in to keep things interesting and lively.

JAZZFAKERS Hallucinations

Album · 2016 · Jazz Related Improv/Composition
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Free improvisation is probably the oldest music tradition known to man. No doubt this is where it all began, back when early humanoids tried to figure out what to do with some hollowed out logs, reeds or bamboo. As music developed throughout the globe, some forms of improvisation remained in many cultures, but not so much in the Western world. Flash forward a few centuries and a new generation in the US and Europe 'discovered' free improvisation, both in the concert hall domain, as well as in the worlds of jazz and rock too. Moving into the 21st century, the worlds of 1960s free jazz and 80s post punk noise collided into new improvisational hybrids, which leads us to The JazzFaker’s new CD, “Hallucinations”. The JazzFakers are a talented bunch who know their chosen genre well, and I would imagine their live shows are good, and some of that comes across on the new CD, but some parts of this CD are undermined by sound issues.

Probably the biggest concern many have about ‘free improv’ is that they assume the musicians are playing this way because they lack the technique or discipline to play anything else. That may be true of some post punk wannabes, but not the Fakers, especially drummer Matt Luczak, saxophonist David Tamura, and bass player Raphael Zwyer, who all have decent chops and maybe have even taken some ‘giant steps’ somewhere along the way. There is no lack of skill here, but there is something lacking in the mixing and production department. The biggest problem is that the sound of the drum set lacks definition and presence, mostly you can only hear the cymbals, which is a shame, as Matt sounds like a good drummer, if only you could hear him a little better. Another problem is the use of overly loud clack-clack-clack persistent mechanical rhythms, probably played by a looping device of some kind. This problem mars both the beginnings of track one and two. When the band is allowed free reign without the repetitive sounds, they sound great. Some highlights include an incredibly creepy violin solo on “Delirium Tremens”, a classic free jazz drums vs. sax duo on “The Sacred Disease”, and excellent all out mayhem on the closing track.

The JazzFakers are a good band, and “Hallucinations” shows that in many places, but it could have been better with a different mix. All the same, this is good enough to recommend to those looking for something in between 70s Sun Ra, Stockhausen and early Pink Floyd, but in a modern NYC stylee.

BELEDO Dreamland Mechanism

Album · 2016 · Classic Fusion
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Fans of uber jazz fusion guitarists like John Mclaughlin and Alan Holdsworth have a new reason to rejoice in the rising star of Uruguayan guitarist Beledo. Actually Beledo is not new, he has been a star in Latin America for some time now, and in recent years has been working with some well known North Americans such as Randy Brecker, Adam Holzman and Gary Husband. If Beledo’s name is not known yet, signing with MoonJune records in 2013 should help give him more exposure. So we come to 2016 and Beledo has released a new album of powerhouse virtuoso classic fusion called “Dreamland Mechanism”.

The first three cuts on this CD reveal that Belado is not only a formidable guitarist but he can also play keyboards with the best of them as well. On these three tracks, Beledo is a one man mini-orchestra, double tracking guitars, violin, accordian and keyboards while backed by the rhythm section of Lincoln Goines on bass, and Gary Husband on drums. Opening track, “Mechanism”, is a highlight with its late 60s styled heavy riffs reminding us how much early jazz rock came from the hard blues centered riffs of Jack Bruce and Cream. On track four, “Lucila”, Belado shows his interest in poly-rhythmic Indonesian fusion by bringing on Sundanese percussionists, Endang Ramdan and Cucu Kurnia. “Sudden Voyage” continues the complex rhythms as Husband plays something very akin to an Afro-Cuban ensemble on his drum kit.

For the rest of the album, Beledo puts away the keyboards and sticks to his ample guitar skills as they fire off some more classic fusion tracks, and one more with Indonesian flavor, “Budjanaji”, which also features a solo from Indonesian guitarist Dewa Budjana. Beledo sites Alan Holdsworth as an inspiration, and his influence shows, but Beledo is far from a copyist and has developed his own signature sound, one that should start becoming more familiar to the international fusion crowd. Fans of high quality jazz-fusion guitaristics should check this out, this is not just mind-numbing shredding, Beledo has technique to burn, but he can be tastefully melodic and expressive as well. You will hear plenty of intense fret work on "Dreamland Mechanism", but Belodo always puts the music first.

Latest Forum Topic Posts

  • Posted 3 days ago in Feedback on demos
    Sounds good to me, your pitch is good. I thought you were a little more comfortable with "Prince", that one is very good.Seemed like there was a little too much reverb on the voice, especially on the first one.
  • Posted 21 days ago in Lee Scratch Perry, new DVD
    Lee Scratch Perry "Must Be Free" coming September 23rdThe dub reggae legend returns to the studio with a wide-ranging narrative in collaboration with SpacewaveOn "Must Be Free", the Grammy-winning artist, songwriter, and producer doesn't hesitate with his unexpurgated commentary on his spirituality, good and evil, the human condition, and aliens. Featured styles include reggae, dub, dubstep, acid jazz, and electronic music. Special guests include Subatomic Sound System, The Groovematist, and IAmPhloboi.Perry was one of the pioneers in the development of dub music with his early adoption of effects and remixing to create new instrumental or vocal versions of existing reggae tracks. He has worked with Bob Marley and the Wailers, Junior Murvin, the Congos, Max Romeo and many others. Perry has over 60 albums to his name, can read minds, once put a curse on the BBC for not playing his records, and was turned into Superman by Haitian zombie drugs. He's the kind of cosmic entity that has inspired everyone from the Beastie Boys, Andrew WK, Animal Collective, to Keith Richards with some of his mystic dub magic."Must Be Free" Track ListingPsycho DreadRat RaceHouse of SinIsabelJungle TongueNo EvilNo SorrowOn NigeriaStrip OffToo Much Is Too MuchTherapistMust Be FreeHouse of Sin (Remix)The CD can be ordered now at the MVD Shop or on Amazon.Hi Res Cover Art: http://mvdb2b.com/i/300dpi/MEGW0452.jpg# # #  js2016-08-02 19:59:00
  • Posted 21 days ago in New DVD about the history of Tower Records
    All Things Must Passcoming to DVD on September 13thDocumentary examining Tower Records' explosive trajectory, tragic demise, and legacyEstablished in 1960, Tower Records was once a retail powerhouse with 200 stores, in 30 countries, on five continents. From humble beginnings in a small-town drugstore, Tower Records eventually became the heart and soul of the music world, and a powerful force in the music industry. In 1999, Tower Records made an astounding $1 billion. In 2006, the company filed for bankruptcy. What went wrong? Everyone thinks they know what killed Tower Records: The Internet. But that's not the story. Directed by Colin Hanks, and featuring music icons like Dave Grohl, Elton John and Bruce Springsteen, All Things Must Pass is a feature documentary film examining this iconic company's explosive trajectory, tragic demise, and legacy forged by its rebellious founder Russ Solomon. For seven years, Hanks took on the documentary that lamented and celebrated the Sacramento-based record store that grew from his hometown into an American retail powerhouse."I remember buying 'Blood Sugar Sex Magik' by the Red Hot Chili Peppers. It was the informative record for me on my musical path, which I bought at Tower Records," he said.Variety validated the efforts of Hanks saying the film was "soundly constructed, briskly paced and, in the end, affectingly wistful." The DVD can be ordered now at the MVD ShopHi Res Cover Art: http://mvdb2b.com/i/300dpi/MVD8724D.jpg# # # js2016-08-02 19:54:57


Please login to post a shout
Warthur wrote:
more than 2 years ago
Hey dude,

You've banned me from the forums but I can still access the review submission system and site interactions.

If that is intentional then fair enough but if not I thought it'd only be honest to give you a heads up.

Warthur wrote:
more than 2 years ago
js - please clear some space in your PM inbox, I'm trying to send you something.


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