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Showing only albums and live's | Based on members ratings & JMA custom algorithm | 60 min. caching

SOFT MACHINE Third Album Cover Third
SOFT MACHINE
4.75 | 53 ratings
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YES Fragile Album Cover Fragile
YES
4.88 | 11 ratings
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SANTANA Caravanserai Album Cover Caravanserai
SANTANA
4.68 | 44 ratings
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PARLIAMENT Mothership Connection Album Cover Mothership Connection
PARLIAMENT
4.85 | 9 ratings
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CURTIS MAYFIELD Superfly Album Cover Superfly
CURTIS MAYFIELD
4.96 | 6 ratings
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KING CRIMSON Larks' Tongues In Aspic Album Cover Larks' Tongues In Aspic
KING CRIMSON
4.64 | 34 ratings
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STEVIE WONDER Innervisions Album Cover Innervisions
STEVIE WONDER
4.73 | 14 ratings
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JOHN ZORN Magick Album Cover Magick
JOHN ZORN
4.83 | 8 ratings
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STEELY DAN Aja Album Cover Aja
STEELY DAN
4.65 | 23 ratings
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FRANK ZAPPA The Grand Wazoo (The Mothers) Album Cover The Grand Wazoo (The Mothers)
FRANK ZAPPA
4.58 | 40 ratings
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MARTIN DENNY Exotica Album Cover Exotica
MARTIN DENNY
4.94 | 5 ratings
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YES The Yes Album Album Cover The Yes Album
YES
4.75 | 9 ratings
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Lighthouse
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This is Christmas
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MARCUS ANDERSON
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Blood Moon
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DAVE BENNETT
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Music For Your Heart -Best Of David T. Walker
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DAVID T WALKER
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Christmas With Champian
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CHAMPIAN FULTON
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Memento Mori
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KING CAPISCE
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La Notte
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GIORGIO GASLINI
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Song Of Silver Geese
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JEN SHYU
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Estonian Suite - Live In Tallinn
Live album
IÑAKI SANDOVAL
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Sound Coloring
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THE ADEKAEM
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The Music Of / Skies Of America
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ORNETTE COLEMAN
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Garden Of Love Light / I Cry, I Smile / Awakening
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NARADA MICHAEL WALDEN
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Third Generation / Another Place / Go
Boxset / Compilation
HIROSHIMA
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Crying Song / Afro-Classic / The Rite Of Spring
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HUBERT LAWS
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Cornell 5.8.77
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GRATEFUL DEAD
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Tribute to Jimmy Smith
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LUCKY PETERSON
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Dalida By Ibrahim Maalouf
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IBRAHIM MAALOUF
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Léandre - Minton
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JOËLLE LÉANDRE
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Don Cosmic
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DON DRUMMOND
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A Million Things
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ROHEY
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Cosmic Forces
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PODD
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Free of Form
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SARAH ELIZABETH CHARLES
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Look Back and Love
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SUE MCCREETH
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No-Instrument Air Noise
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JUNJI HIROSE
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Live at the Hollywood Bowl
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JEFF BECK
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Erlend Apneseth Trio : Åra
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ERLEND APNESETH
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Marcelo Dos Reis / Eve Risser : Timeless
Live album
MARCELO DOS REIS
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Making Faces
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SOFTEN THE GLARE
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Nero
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KATHLEEN POTTON
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Don't Give Up on Love
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DON BRYANT
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Instrumental
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DAVE CHISHOLM
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On The Level!
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PHILIPPE SAISSE
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Groove On!
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EUGE GROOVE
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Solid Gold
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NIKKI YANOFSKY
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Utopian Tales
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STEIN URHEIM
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Jomon
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AKIRA SAKATA
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Pick Your Poison
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SELWYN BIRCHWOOD
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Casey Abrams Live
Live album
CASEY ABRAMS
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Melodies of D.E.B
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DEAN FRASER
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DMC Jamiroquai Monsterjam
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JAMIROQUAI
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Memphis
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AMY BLACK
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Forest Stairways
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JAZZCOMPUTER.ORG
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At Onkel Po's Carnegie Hall Hamburg 1978
Live album
ESTHER PHILLIPS
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Fuse One & Silk
Boxset / Compilation
FUSE ONE
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M.a.d. 1
Single
KATE KNIFE
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The Beatnik
EP
CHIP WICKHAM
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La Sombra Remixes
EP
CHIP WICKHAM
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Bad Hombre
Album
ANTONIO SANCHEZ
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Lieber Heiland, laß uns sterben
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MARTIN KÜCHEN / TRESPASS TRIO
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A Pollock of Sound
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BORBETOMAGUS
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Horizon Sunset
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BLOOMERANGS (#BLOOMERANGS)
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Discussions
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ROSCOE MITCHELL
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Chimeric Stoned Horn
Album
ROB MAZUREK
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Greatest Hits Live
Boxset / Compilation
STEVE WINWOOD
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Black Notes from the Deep
Album
COURTNEY PINE
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Wheelhouse
Album
GREG HOWE
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Rocks
Boxset / Compilation
ARTHUR "BIG BOY" CRUDUP
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Live From The North Side Of Chicago
Live album
MIGHTY JOE YOUNG
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San Francisco 1977
Live album
BIG JOE TURNER
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The Soulful 'Mirrors' Sound! (2 LP on 1 CD)
Boxset / Compilation
DICK HYMAN
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In Between Silence
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RADIO.STRING.QUARTET.VIENNA
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The Best (2004-2017)
Boxset / Compilation
INCOGNITO
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Hearing is Believing
Album
RACHEL FLOWERS
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Gnosis
Album
DAVID VIRELLES
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Vein Plays Ravel
Album
VEIN
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Frogs
EP
BARRY GUY
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Brother? Brother!
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ANNE DUCROS
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The Christmas Wish
Album
HERB ALPERT
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Pelagos
Live album
STEFANO BATTAGLIA
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Oops! + Prelude to the Blues
Boxset / Compilation
BILL DOGGETT
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Live in London
Live album
CHRIS STANDRING
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Storytelling
Live album
FRED FRITH
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Green Man
Album
BEAT FUNKTION
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The Rusted Heart
Album
ROB THOMSETT
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Arise
Album
ZARA MCFARLANE
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The Lonely Traveller
Album
PSYCHIC EQUALIZER
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Ozone Squeeze
Album
OZ NOY
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DMB Live 25
Live album
DAVE MATTHEWS BAND
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Friends & Heroes: Guitar Duets
Album
HENRY KAISER
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Bootleg
Boxset / Compilation
JAMES TAYLOR QUARTET
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Yaraandoo & Hara
Boxset / Compilation
ROB THOMSETT
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Fly Away
Album
JEFF KASHIWA
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Rawfishboys : Fengling
Album
JOACHIM BADENHORST
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2017 IWW Band
Album
EUGENE CHADBOURNE
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Rawfishboys : The White Starline
Album
JOACHIM BADENHORST
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For You a Thousand Times
Album
SILJE NERGAARD
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Southern Blood
Album
GREGG ALLMAN
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The Lago Years
Boxset / Compilation
JAH WOBBLE
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Ballads
Album
JONATHAN FRITZÉN
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Hocus Pocus Box
Boxset / Compilation
FOCUS
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1970
Album
AVISHAI COHEN (BASS)
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Bill Orcutt
Album
BILL ORCUTT
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Far Into the Stars
Album
MARKUS STOCKHAUSEN
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B-a-C-H
Album
DIETER ILG
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Verley Uns Frieden
Album
BUJAZZO
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Pandora's Bag
Album
JOANNA WEINBERG
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Splendor in the Grass/The Manchurian Candidate
Boxset / Compilation
DAVID AMRAM
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Grace
Album
LIZZ WRIGHT
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Doom Patrol
Album
OMAR RODRÍGUEZ-LÓPEZ
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Poetry in Motion
Album
NAJEE
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Honestly
Album
BONEY JAMES
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5 Original Albums
Boxset / Compilation
CHUCK MANGIONE
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5 Original Albums
Boxset / Compilation
DAVE GRUSIN
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Dromology
Album
INNER EAR BRIGADE
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Phosphorescence
Album
DANS LES ARBRES
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Ishihara
Album
CAKEWALK
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Stand Up
Album
WENDY LUCK
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Rome
Album
ROB MAZUREK
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The Eighth Hour Of Amduat
Album
DAVID SOLDIER
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History of the Kropotkins
Boxset / Compilation
DAVID SOLDIER
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Memphis
Album
DEE DEE BRIDGEWATER
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Bad Ass and Blind
Album
RAUL MIDÓN
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End Of The World Remixes
Album
ELZA SOARES
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Live at the Cathedral
Live album
MOON HOOCH
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Mark Wastell & Julie Tippetts : 17.1.17
Live album
JULIE TIPPETTS
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The Set List Shuffle
Album
BLAZING FLAME
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The People Upstairs
Album
JOE GARRISON
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Headnod Suite
Album
KARRIEM RIGGINS
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Pin Drop
Album
ADAM BEN EZRA
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Love Politics War
Album
YOLANDA BROWN
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The St Louis Toodle-oo
Live album
STEELY DAN
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Red Nation "1"
Album
TIM DAISY
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Silfr
Album
VILDE&INGA
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Tooth
Album
MUMPBEAK
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Stockholm Underground
Album
MAGNUS LINDGREN
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Music Vol. 1
Album
HERB ALPERT
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Three Black Kings
Live album
DUKE ELLINGTON
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Drops & Points
Album
PASCAL SCHUMACHER
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The Concert in Hyde Park
Live album
PAUL SIMON
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近未来原始人 イズミンゴス
Live album
KUNIHIRO IZUMI
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Wake Up
Album
JENNIFER SARAN
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Different Voices
Album
CORKY SIEGEL
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Evergreens
Album
PLUG AND PRAY
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Robert Cray & Hi Rhythm
Album
ROBERT CRAY
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Folk Songs
Album
KRONOS QUARTET
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Terry Riley Don Cherry Duo
Album
TERRY RILEY
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The Order Of Time
Album
VALERIE JUNE
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Gotta Boogie, Gotta Sing
Boxset / Compilation
JOHN LEE HOOKER
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The Bottom Line Archive
Boxset / Compilation
JACK BRUCE
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Visions Of The Future
Live album
GRATEFUL DEAD
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Stain
Single
XAN BONEY (AKA ALEXANDER BONE)
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BACHanalia
Album
BILL CUNLIFFE
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Main Street Beat
Album
JACKIEM JOYNER
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Pleonid
Live album
STUART POPEJOY
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Open Air
Album
THEO TRAVIS
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Memento
Album
MARKUS REUTER
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Falling For Ascension
Album
MARKUS REUTER
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Summa
Album

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Pastel - Solo Piano
Album
ROSSANO SPORTIELLO
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Miami '85
Live album
MICHAEL HEDGES
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Live in New Orleans 2017
Live album
HELEN GILLET
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Romantic Rokoko Jazz
Boxset / Compilation
EUGEN CICERO
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Prime Time: The Epic Anthology
Boxset / Compilation
MTUME
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Minimal Animal
Album
THE LINK QUARTET
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The Best of the Skatalites
Boxset / Compilation
THE SKATALITES
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Triboluminescence
Album
ANDY SUMMERS
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Orlando in Heaven
Album
BRIAN TARQUIN
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Long Strange Trip (OST)
Album
GRATEFUL DEAD
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Fat Sparrow II
EP
FAT SPARROW
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The Sunshine Makers
Album
THE HELIOCENTRICS
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PoliturPassiarer: music by Audun Kleive
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SCHEEN JAZZORKESTER
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Celebration Ensemble
Live album
AGUSTÍ FERNÁNDEZ
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Alcanza
Album
FABIAN ALMAZAN
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Saluting Sgt. Pepper
Album
DJANGO BATES
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Other River
Album
JOEL HARRISON
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Bricks
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DAVID STACKENÄS
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Improvisation On Life
Album
NIELS LAN DOKY / TRIO MONTMARTRE
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Skeleton Key
Album
ESCAPER
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Nobody Does it Better : James Bond
Album
THE CCM (CINCINNATI CONSERVATORY OF MUSIC) JAZZ ORCHESTRA
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Bartók In Rock
Album
DIALETO
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Que Me Duele?
EP
QUANTIC
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Smells like Aranis
Album
ARANIS
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The Shadow
Single
VP (VYACHESLAV POTAPOV)
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Star Gazing
Album
MIKE LEVINE
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Open Your Heart
Album
GEOFF ALPERT
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To See You
EP
MURAD KAJLAYEV
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Cut Air
Album
JIM DENLEY
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Birth Of A Ghost
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OMAR RODRÍGUEZ-LÓPEZ
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Spoonful Blues
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CHARLEY PATTON
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Sex 'n' Jazz (Remastered expanded edition)
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GARE DU NORD
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Color Me
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FCF OF FUNK
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Bona Fide
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JULIAN VAUGHN
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New Eyes On Martin Luther
Live album
NILS LANDGREN
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Alone
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J.A.M
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Blue Guitar
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MIKE COOPER
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Reluctant Swimmer / Virtual Surfer
Live album
MIKE COOPER
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Chromola
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1982
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Signal 9
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MIRIODOR
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Eternal Stories
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QUATUOR EBÈNE
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Why
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JAC BERROCAL
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Love in Beats
Album
OMAR
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Gave My Heart
EP
OMAR
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Developing Story
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ALAN BROADBENT
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Oklahoma Rain
Album
DARA TUCKER
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TajMo
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TAJMO
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Heroes
EP
KING CRIMSON
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Sound American: The Cassette Issue
Live album
CHRIS PITSIOKOS
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Alone
Album
THIERRY MAILLARD
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Katharsis/Earmeal/Presens
Boxset / Compilation
JANNE SCHAFFER
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A&R Studios, New York '71
Live album
B. B. KING
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Sirene 1009
Live album
SIRENE 1009
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Kari Ongen
EP
KARI BAND
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Bite of the Orange
EP
MICROTUB
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Err Guitar
Album
ELLIOTT SHARP
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Hawaii To Calcutta: A Tribute To Tau Moe
Album
DEBASHISH BHATTACHARYA
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The Essential Recordings
Boxset / Compilation
ELMORE JAMES
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Together Again!
Album
THE OBERHAMER BROTHERS
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Malnoia
Album
JORN SWART
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FunkUnite 2000
Album
SMOKE&SMILE
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At Onkel Po's Carnegie Hall Hamburg 1980
Live album
ALBERT COLLINS
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Mandorla Awakening Ii : Emerging Worlds
Live album
NICOLE MITCHELL
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Triumph
Album
RONALD BRUNER JR
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I Forgot to Breathe
Album
LEAN LEFT
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dot music
Album
DARYL RUNSWICK
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The Beat Of My Heart
Album
LISA BIALES
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Deliverance
EP
PRINCE
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Solid State Mercenaries
Album
OMAR RODRÍGUEZ-LÓPEZ
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Blue Mind(2LP/45RPM/180g/Translucent Blue Vinyl)
Boxset / Compilation
ANNE BISSON
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All This I Do For Glory
Album
COLIN STETSON
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Frosty Leo
EP
FROSTY LEO
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Amaury
Album
WOUTER HAMEL
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Fantasizing About Being Black
Album
OTIS TAYLOR
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Möbius Strip
Album
MÖBIUS STRIP (ITALY)
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Big City Awakes
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ON THE RAW
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Humanity
Album
DRAW THE SKY
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Right Up On
Live album
OLIVER LAKE
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Lunar Love Remixed
EP
MOP MOP
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You Gotta Sell Something!
Album
BLAIR CRIMMINS & THE HOOKERS
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Lovecovers
Album
KIRK WHALUM
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Eklektik
Album
ANTONIO FARAÒ
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Just Funkin' Around
Album
PIECES OF A DREAM
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Jhator
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ZU
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Mind On The Run: A Basil Kirchin Sampler
Promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)
BASIL KIRCHIN
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Whiskey & Wimmen: John Lee Hooker’s Finest
Boxset / Compilation
JOHN LEE HOOKER
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Woodstock Sessions Vol. 6
Live album
MARCO BENEVENTO
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Manhattan Research
Album
RAYMOND SCOTT
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The Complete Syllables Music
Album
NATE WOOLEY
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jazz related Music Reviews

KENNY BURRELL Midnight Blue

Album · 1963 · Jazz Related Blues
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js
In the early 60s, jazz artists cutting a blues album was not an uncommon thing at all. Jimmy Smith, Stanley Turrentine and others put out some of their most successful albums during this time by applying their be-bop chops to some well known blues changes. In early 1963, when Kenny Burrell approached Blue Note head, Alfred Lion, about cutting a blues album, this propisition probably came as no surprise to Lion who was more than happy to let Kenny in the studio to create his blues masterpiece, “Midnight Blue”. The title of this album tells you everything you need to know, this is definitely late night blues with an emphasis on laid back tempos and soulful solos, as opposed to extroverted blazing technique. The band Kenny assembled on here was perfect for the date, with the aforementioned Stanley Turrentine on tenor, Ray Barretto on congas, Major Holley Jr on bass and the understated Bill English on the traps.

Although all of these tracks could be labeled as laid back blues, there is some variety to keep things from becoming too stodgy or predictable. “Wavy Gravy” is notable for being that rare blues tune in waltz time, while other closing and opening tracks on both sides of this record pick up the tempo into a medium swing groove. “Soul Lament” features Kenny on his own, and “Gee Baby ain’t I Good to You” is the only standard, but it too is essentially a blues song. The best thing about this album is its rock solid integrity, drop the needle anywhere you want and you will get the same feeling, no matter the tempo. This is one very sure artistic vision about the blues from start to finish. Even the instrumentation backs up this album’s cohesion, an added piano player would have made things too cluttered, and a B3 player would have made things syrupy and heavy handed, everything is exactly in its place as it ought to be. The addition of Barretto’s subtle conga work is the icing on the cake, as these sort of slow tempos need a little double time action to help keep the groove together.

Although the current ‘vinyl revival’ seems a bit hokey and fabricated by salesmen, its still nice that you can now buy classic jazz records in pristine condition for an almost reasonable price.

MAGMA Félicité Thösz

Album · 2012 · Jazz Related Rock
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siLLy puPPy
Originally composed in the years 2001-02, like many MAGMA releases FÉLICITÉ THÖSZ saw a delayed release but in this case didn't have to wait decades to grace our ears with Kobaian love music. This one only took one ten year period to ferment into the musical fluffiness that we hear! This is perhaps one of the softest and gracefully uplifting MAGMA albums ever to hit planet Earth. While it seems every previous album was some kind of piece to some ridiculously convoluted story about the Kobaians coming and going from planet Earth, FÉLICITÉ THÖSZ simply sounds like their version of a Sunday service where all chants, vocals, guitars, vibraphones, bass and drums are conspiring to celebrate their decades long achievement and to give thanks to the universe for allowing their muddled history to unfold and bring them to a place of eternal peace.

On this release we hear Stella Vander lead the group with a nice diva driven vocal range only much less aggressive and bombastic as on previous offerings. This musical journey contains ten tracks but in reality you cannot really distinguish them separately because they all flow together just perfectly making a very long epic track. This is one of the shorter MAGMA albums clocking in just past the 32 minute mark, but what graceful beautiful music this is. I would almost call this whole album one long Kobaian ballad as the piano and female vocals are what dominates the soundscape. Christian Vander has never sounded so subdued with his percussion skills and as a huge fan of vibraphones, glockenspiels and bells, this really hits me where it counts!

Soft and sensual and occasionally bombastic, this Kobaian journey takes us through the familiar zeuhl melodies and rhythms but once again MAGMA surprises us with yet another take on their sound. This album is very much focused on female vocals but male vocals are essential as well. In general the vocal harmonies are very much the focal point of the whole thing. Hypnotic and exercising control in minimalism, FÉLICITÉ THÖSZ continues the MAGMA legacy keeping the Kobaians relevant in yet another decade in the 21st century. While this band has more masterpieces than should be possible, i find FÉLICITÉ THÖSZ to be yet one more MAGMA- nanimous edition to their outstanding discography.

TOPAZ The Zone

Album · 2002 · Acid Jazz
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aglasshouse
It had already been five years since tenor saxophonist Topaz McGarrigle's Texan jazz act made it's debut by the time the group's third studio album rolled around. It's hard to judge whether or not they were earning the fruits of their labor because, other than the occasional resurfacing of McGarrigle such as his new band Golden Dawn Arkestra, the group has practically erased themselves from all the books.

Topaz were hampered down their whole career by a changing music scene after their pilgrimage from Texas to bustling New York City. McGarrigle's idea was to take advantage of the reinvigorated neo-futurist (as I like to call it) jazz casually gaining momentum in the 90's and market his and his groups talents within it. Problem was, hip-hop and R&B had been gaining momentum much more within the same decade, so much so that the hype for this new medium basically snuffed the jazz candle from any mainstream success. Although Topaz never truly made it to any high status or really even cult status sadly, they nevertheless delivered several great releases as they continued to evolve, regardless of how much attention they were getting...or lack thereof.

Topaz' music isn't exactly revolutionary, nor is it exceptionally technical like you might expect a contemporary jazz fusion act might be. Of course, McGarrigle's work on the sax is extremely proficient in both standard style and avant-garde, as well Squantch on the trombone. But what Topaz's The Zone exudes more than anything is personality. Tight knit instrumentation can bleed perfectly into rich improvisation, making the entire group, while not exactly attempting to show themselves as the most technically robust jazz act out there, still manage to make themselves seem like living legends with class alone. This could in part be due to the influence electric-era Miles Davis had on them, and to which they owe much of their structural composition. Yet other genres progressively ooze their way onto the set, particularly on the funky bass licks being the driving force on many tracks, such as the almost 8 minute long swagger of 'Walkabout'. The funk attitude is also present on heavy groovers like 'Fat City Strut', and with a name like that I'd expect nothing less. A tinge of psychedelic aura on many of the songs, especially the opener 'Minha Mente', reinforced by the mesmerizing drum fills by Christian Ulrich, make for a well-reinforced acid-jazz environment.

Some dubious elements also make themselves present though. The occasional vocal breaks on some of the songs, like the overly cheesy ones of 'You & Me', tend to disrupt the flow of what would otherwise be a very maturely structured song. Along with that and a fair bit of annoying repetition in many of the songs (in the percussion section especially) do make The Zone withstand a bit more quality it otherwise would have.

Topaz's third album marks another rather good release for the band after 2000's Listen!, and also marks the band's continued level of quality even as they progressed towards their dissolution.

FRANK ZAPPA Absolutely Free (The Mothers Of Invention)

Album · 1967 · Jazz Related Rock
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siLLy puPPy
ABSOLUTELY FREE is absolutely just that. Freer than any bird that a certain American Southern rock band would later sing about or even come close to sounding like. I have to always go back and look at the year on the CD when I listen to this. Really? 1967? Uh, wait a minute wasn't that the year of the Summer Of Love and all the other psychedelic and hippie love gracing the musical world? Well, yeah but obviously nobody told Mr. Zappa and the Mothers. They had their own jaded agenda and much more grounded in reality it was. While many were dropping out, Mr Zappa and the Mothers were dropping biting critiques taking pokes at politics and society in general. To this day this remains some of the most intelligently designed musical expressions ever laid down on tape.

After a great start with their debut this is the album where all those wonderful and crazy ideas really came to roost. You know the kind. The kind music that forces you to recalibrate your musical attitude to get it and either fall in love with it like I did or reject it in total dismay because it's just too scary! Mommy help me! Whether you hate it or love it, it forces you to react and you either dive in for repeated listens or you run away in total shock and horror accusing them of blasphemy and being possessed by demons who are out to destroy the status quo. This was not my first Zappa album but it has become one of my top 50! It helps that they dropped the overabundance of doowop and dared to fly their freak flags ever higher. I am inclined to think that the Mothers Of Invention were one of the most significant bands to catalyze what we now call progressive music. Nothing was even close to this style of madness back in 1967 and precious few acts have achieved it since.

This album which has been described as a condensed 2-hour musical was one of the first overtly complex albums that excelled at political and social satire. On this album Bunk Gardner was added on saxophone which created an even richer sound and consists of 2 side long suites that take music in directions never thought possible. Although this is unlike anything else one can still hear the Stravinsky and Varese influences if you're familiar with their music and of course the Mothers were pioneering the unthinkable act of creating jazz-fusion.

This must have been a total slap in the face to any listener when this came out. Between the over-the-top criticism and intelligently delivered lyrics mixed with a musical collage of ideas that rotate like a sampling guide it just plain boggles the mind! This is one of the best albums Mr Zappa and the Mothers ever came up with. It is brilliant from the very first track “Plastic People” to the closing “America Drinks And Goes Home.” Although bonus tracks are extremely hit and miss on Zappa albums, the two tracks “Big Leg Emma” and “Why Don't You Do Me Right” fit in perfectly on my Rykodisc version of this musical masterpiece.

MAGMA Mekanïk Kommandöh

Album · 1989 · Jazz Related Rock
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siLLy puPPy
After a pair of wild and unhinged jazz-rock fusion albums that introduced the world to the strange world of the fictitious world of Kobaia invented by the fertile mind of founder and drumming leader Christian Vander, he and his band MAGMA streamlined their sound significantly. Although their self-invented zeuhl sound had emerged already on the first album, it was a subordinate element surrounded by a smorgasbord of a million others. On their third album “Mëkanïk Dëstruktïẁ Kömmandöh“ the band created their first album that totally fit in with their new found focused sound and in the process created their most acclaimed record even ranking as 33rd greatest French rock album of all time according to Rolling Stone. Despite those impressive creds, the album didn’t start out so perfect and the band originally turned in a more stripped down version in early 1973 but was refused by the record company and who sent them back to the drawing board which would end up finally being released in December of the same year.

MEKANÏK KOMMANDÖH is that stripped down first version of “Mëkanïk Dëstruktïẁ Kömmandöh“ and was released in 1989 at the tail end of a decade of laying low when the progressive rock world trickled down to a mere pittance of its former 70s heyday. The similarities between the two releases is obvious but the differences are staggering in their impact. While the second rendition contained a whopping 13 members which included brass, flute, bass clarinet and seven vocal parts, the first version MEKANÏK KOMMANDÖH included a modest seven members with only three of them uttering vocalizations of any sort. One of the greatest differences in this version is the introduction where Christian Vander offers some sort of Kobaian speech that sounds like some sort of declaration of war in their invented language which was nixed from the more famous “Mëkanïk Dëstruktïẁ Kömmandöh.“

Despite being a good decision to release it in a more perfect form, MEKANÏK KOMMANDÖH gives a clue to the intent of the music somewhat. This album in its stripped down form really sounds like some sort of Teutonic march across the lands on their way to plunder, pillage and lay waste to any village that stands in its way. This is more pronounced as Vander’s virtuosic drum antics are more in the forefront minus the inclusion of the smoothing out effect of the horn sections. While more dramatic in nature, this version also has the tendency to become a bit monotonous as well as somewhere around twenty minutes into the thunderous march the vocal tradeoffs tend to seem a little silly as the call-and-response effect carry on and on and on a wee bit too long and with minimal instrumental distractions to be found makes it all the more prominent. While the instruments are scarce by comparison, Zander rocks the house as expected but also of high caliber are the combo effect of bassist Jean Pierre Lambert and Jean Luc Manderlier’s phenomenal piano and organ segments.

MEKANÏK KOMMANDÖH can only be taken as supplemental MAGMA material for as good as it is, it pales in comparison to the more MAGMA-nanimous “Mëkanïk Dëstruktïẁ Kömmandöh.“ I feel the original record company made the right decision to put these guys back to work as this version in its proto-scaffolding form sounds way too much like the Karl Orff cantina “Carmina Burana” which has always provided a wealth of influence in the overall Magma sound. Without all those jazzy brassy instruments adding extra layers of atmosphere and counter-bombast, the overall feel comes off as a bona fide Orff tribute album albeit more in a rock context. While personally these kinds of releases from the vaults type of albums don’t usually do it for me, this one is an interesting way to hear how the ideas were layered over time.

I came across this one in a very strange way. This was my first MAGMA album which i mistook for “Mëkanïk Dëstruktïẁ Kömmandöh.“ My initial reaction was a scratching of the head because i couldn’t figure out why it was deemed in such high regard. Once i figured out that this was nothing more than a rough draft / first edition and finally heard the final cut, it all made sense. I avoided this one for a while simply because of that bad taste involved but now that i’m checking it out in a fresh clean slate, i have to admit that it’s actually a pretty good album in its own right, it’s just not on par with the much improved second rendition. Definitely a must for MAGMA fans but certainly not the place to begin exploration of their discography and eccentric career. Just be careful and don’t assume that everything with the two invented words MEKANÏK KOMMANDÖH in the title are the same. Even the bonus track of the same name on newer editions of “Mëkanïk Dëstruktïẁ Kömmandöh“ is a different version. Now how’s that for confusing? Ugh.

jazz related movie reviews

KING CRIMSON Neal And Jack And Me

Movie · 2004 · Jazz Related Rock
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Sean Trane
This DVD will please many of the third Crimson phase fans combines two tours: the Beat tour and the Three Of A Perfect pair. Oddly enough, they are presented in a non- chronological order, but this is a very minor point. One of the things I was particularly uneasy about was Bruford's use of electronic percussions and drums and we get a load of those "things" and like all technology novelty, the risk is that it ages poorly and sadly here, it is the case. Another point I had not appreciated is the stage presence of Adrian Belew, which is clearly copied from David Byrne from his collaborations with The Talking Heads - I love the T Heads, but Belew's stage antics are too derivative and ill fitted for Crimson. There are a few tracks present twice and most notably the boring Mate Kusadai.

Strictly on the visual front, Crimson was clearly making efforts to look hip and appeal to a more new-wave-ish public. Those were the days! But I never said that they were good, either!

Among the bonuses, are a video clip and a few titbits, but sadly still missing is that mini- concert footage filmed for the Discipline release and them playing four tracks in front of a red curtain. I may be severe with my rating of this DVD but I am not a real fan of that era.

GONG Classic Rock Legends

Movie · 2000 · Jazz Related Rock
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seyo
This video contains live performances from 1990 Live on TV album. Four original members of GonG are present: Pip Pyle, Didier Malherbe, Gilli Smyth and an oddball-harlequin persona of the spiritus movens, Daevid Allen.

Performance is focused on their legendary Radio Gnome Invisible trilogy, with 3 starters from Camembert Electrique. Since I have no idea what GonG looked like on scene back in the early 1970s (that is, before I took a peek at several Youtube clips recently), I guess this DVD makes up a lot for that, the age of the performers notwithstanding.

In fact, seeing these unique art-performers in their senior age can just assure you how the music and art in general can surpass generations, years and ages if you wish. Musicianship is great, movie direction very good with several cameras shooting from different angles, while only the engagement of the dancers to invoke the mystical gnomey creatures may be seen as too over-stressed.

The finale presents perhaps too long goodbye with the extended "I Am You" jam, but when Daevid jumps down into the audience you can actually see the highly emotional and spiritual connection between the band and the people, done in an almost religious-like chanting. This is excellent video and should be seen by all those who have at least some knowledge of the Planet GonG trilogy repertoire!

BILL BRUFORD Bbc Rock Goes To College: Live 1979

Movie · 2006 · Jazz Related Rock
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Dick Heath
I remember seeing this originally on BBC 2 a few weeks after it was recorded in one of the canteens of Oxford Poly, and getting a mix of intense pleasure. In particular pleasure from the tour de force that Holdsworth had developed into (and screamed out at me on Feels Good To Me)and the unknown bass-wiz Jeff Berlin. But there was disappointment over Annette's contribution to the set - when her husky voice breathed sex at me on the album.

Now here from the Beeb's archives is the original 70's video quality footage as originally shown on 625 lines. The pleasure points remain, with some details emphasised. However the disappointment is worse, in particular there is a promise of something special as Peacock flounces on part way through the set, dressed as the fashion queen,(thereby drawing the contrast with the blokes in the band). However,again the expectation of something special evaporates quickly - the diva can't 'deave' live in sympathy with the music, the band i.e. her vocals are poor. Fortunately we don't have to suffer this for long and thank goodness for the skip button.

Yes this is a short recording*, and isn't there a missed opportunity here? One DVD burn (of a copy of a copy, etc.) of this gig I saw some years ago and suffering horribly from colour dropout, had the addition of two extra numbers by Bruford recorded off from the Old Grey Whistle Test - here with I think Neil Murray deputing for Jeff Berlin. Surely the Beeb could had offered these as well?

*Interesting to see another Rock Goes To College recording of Herbie Hancock & the Headhunters recorded at the now defuncted Chelsea College, that had resurfaced on BBC 4 2 years ago, was an hour long.

STING Bring On The Night

Movie · 2005 · Pop Jazz/Crossover
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Slartibartfast
The concept here is a documentary of a band forming, The Blue Turtles Band, rather than a band at their peak or breaking up. Fortunately it is heavier on the music than the documentary.

The first half takes place in a French countryside chateaux and consists of presentable songs from nine days of practice sessions for what was to be their first show. Everyone in the band seems to be having a good time. The chateaux provides nice a nice backdrop to the sessions. The second half is the show itself.

Since this was Sting's first post Police effort, there's a lot of reworked Police songs mixed in with tracks from the first album. It's sort of like the Police meets jazz with Andy Summers ejected so Sting could play guitar. The band line up is primarily younger jazz musicians that already had a good reputation for work they had done before hooking up with Sting.

There are interview excerpts between the songs. One of the more interesting ones was Miles Copeland, Sting's manager and Stewart's brother going on about negotiations with the rest of the band. He was extremely dismissive of the band in relation to Sting when it came to monetary compensation. I suspect that was more about himself getting a bigger piece of the pie than a reflection on Sting, although I do recall him guest appearing on a Saturday Night Live show with Steve Marting and Steve introducing him as Stin-gy.

I originally saw this one in a theater and was really pleased to see it released being reworked with "high definition digital anamorphic picture transfer and digitally remastered surround audio." It actually does look a little sharper than I recall and I think the orginal sound was just stereo.

BILL BRUFORD Bbc Rock Goes To College: Live 1979

Movie · 2006 · Jazz Related Rock
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Slartibartfast
This is incredible. I had the good fortune of seeing Bruford, unfortunately post Holdsworth, at the now defunct Atlanta Agora. I did get to catch Holdsworth touring for his I.O.U. album, but that's another story. My first pass through this concert really gave me the goosebumps.

It is unfortunate that this DVD is only 41 minutes, but the set list is excellent. Four tracks from Bruford's best album, One of a Kind. Annette Peacock even shows up for a couple of songs. I always thought that she didn't fit in well with this kind of music, but it's nice to see her all the same. I hope I'm wrong, but I don't think there's any live video out there of Alan Holdsworth, so seeing him in action is a special treat. One of the things I remember most from seeing Bruford was that at times Jeff Berlin's picking fingers were a blur and seeing him again live, I know I wasn't imagining it. Dave Stewart, or as I like to call him, The Dave Stewart, not that Eurythmics guy, is also a lot of fun to see in action. I noticed he had a music stand with no sheet music, but a synthesizer diagram, interesting. And then of course there's Bill. Those of you who may dislike his electronic drum work, I'm not one, will be happy to him playing strictly acoustic. What can I say? He's really one of best drummers around. The audio quality is excellent and sometimes the camera man crop off Holdsworth's left hand when I'd like to see it, but other than that, this is really nice for a concert captured in 1979.

Artists with Jazz Related release(s)

JMA TOP 5 Jazz ALBUMS

Rating by members, ranked by custom algorithm
Albums with 30 ratings and more
Kind of Blue Cool Jazz
MILES DAVIS
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A Love Supreme Post Bop
JOHN COLTRANE
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CHARLES MINGUS
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El Gavilan World Fusion
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Faith Post Bop
ANDY LAVERNE
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Triple Play Hard Bop
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Gerardo Nu´n~ez Trio Guitarra Flamenco GUITFESTSEVILLA 2013
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js· more than 2 years ago
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