Jazz Related Rock

Jazz music community with reviews, MP3 (free download/stream) and forums

Like its close cousin RnB, rock grew out of the 1940s jazz genre known as jump blues. Needless to say, rock and jazz have had a close relationship from the very beginning. The jazz related rock section at JMA pays tribute to those rock artists who display a certain amount of competent jazz influence in their music. This influence can be displayed via virtuoso extended jam sessions, jazz influenced harmonic language, big band style horn charts or a combination of all this and more.

Jazz artists who utilize rock in their music can be found in the Classic Fusion, (Post 70s) Eclectic Fusion and Post-Fusion Contemporary genres.

jazz related rock top albums

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 | 51 ratings
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KING CRIMSON Larks' Tongues In Aspic Album Cover Larks' Tongues In Aspic
KING CRIMSON
4.65 | 30 ratings
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YES Fragile Album Cover Fragile
YES
4.91 | 8 ratings
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FRANK ZAPPA The Grand Wazoo (The Mothers) Album Cover The Grand Wazoo (The Mothers)
FRANK ZAPPA
4.58 | 38 ratings
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JIMI HENDRIX Are You Experienced (Jimi Hendrix Experience) Album Cover Are You Experienced (Jimi Hendrix Experience)
JIMI HENDRIX
4.58 | 27 ratings
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ROBERT WYATT Rock Bottom Album Cover Rock Bottom
ROBERT WYATT
4.60 | 20 ratings
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HATFIELD AND THE NORTH The Rotters' Club Album Cover The Rotters' Club
HATFIELD AND THE NORTH
4.58 | 18 ratings
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FRANK ZAPPA One Size Fits All (as Frank Zappa And The Mothers Of Invention) Album Cover One Size Fits All (as Frank Zappa And The Mothers Of Invention)
FRANK ZAPPA
4.47 | 36 ratings
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YES The Yes Album Album Cover The Yes Album
YES
4.83 | 6 ratings
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KING CRIMSON Red Album Cover Red
KING CRIMSON
4.48 | 27 ratings
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YES Relayer Album Cover Relayer
YES
4.75 | 7 ratings
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SOFT MACHINE Grides Album Cover Grides
SOFT MACHINE
4.63 | 10 ratings
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This list is in progress since the site is new. We invite all logged in members to use the "quick rating" widget (stars bellow album covers) or post full reviews to increase the weight of your rating in the global average value (see FAQ for more details). Enjoy JMA!

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jazz related rock Music Reviews

JIMI HENDRIX Axis: Bold as Love (Jimi Hendrix Experience)

Album · 1967 · Jazz Related Rock
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siLLy puPPy
At the beginning of 1966, JIMI HENDRIX was struggling to even make minimum wage playing R&B covers. By the end of 1966, he had finished recording his first album “Are You Experienced?” and released it to great success as THE JIMI HENDRIX EXPERIENCE band giving the rock world a must needed kick in the arse. By the beginning of 1967, the band was famous worldwide and penuriousness was replaced by every pressure known to the successful musician and piled upon the trio due to contractual obligations, thus a second album was demanded to be released within the same year of 1967. Sooooo THE EXPERIENCE rushed into the studio and recorded their second album AXIS: BOLD AS LOVE which came out in December, 1967 in the UK but was held back in the US because it was feared it would interfere with sales of the first album, so it was released in May of 1968. Typical record company malarky of the day!

AXIS: BOLD AS LOVE basically continues offering the same psychedelic, energetic and innovative blues rock concoctions that HENDRIX was so successful in constructing on album number one with his elegant display of melodic expansion in the most creative ways. The fact that this band so deftly and proficiently pumped out a majorly spectacular array of brilliant songs is a testament to the power of JIMI HENDRIX and explains how he was able to record decades worth of music in a very short time span when new material is still being released almost fifty years after his untimely passing. The tracks on this album were done with a healthy dose of studio recording techniques of the day and as a result most were never performed in a live setting with the exception of “Spanish Castle Magic” and “Little Wing” but THE EXPERIENCE successfully conjured up a brilliant followup to their spectacular ground breaking debut with grace.

Neck in neck with The Beatles in innovating rock’n’roll, AXIS: BOLD AS LOVE begins with the lysergic mind expansive trip of “EXP” which takes the art of microphone and harmonic feedback to new extreme levels for the day and simulates a strange close encounter of the third kind with extraterrestrial contact. After this strange album introduction, we get some more familiar HENDRIX action with a psychedelic funk rock narration of concerned extraterrestrial life returning to the Earth concerned of the abuses of the top dog species, namely, homo sapiens and how they are degrading the ecosystems upon which their lives are dependent. HENDRIX was totally in tune with the ecological issues plaguing humankind and was ahead of the rest of the world in adapting these issues to music. That would have made a great concept album actually but the album continues on a track by track basis with each song having its own theme and meaning.

Brilliantly THE EXPERIENCE eschews AXIS: from being a clone of “Are You…?” Instead it creates a somewhat similar but more nonchalant way of incorporating the recent upgrades in the rock universe with the usual psychedelic rock guitar riffage of HENDRIX himself with the jazz inspired drum workouts of Mitch Mithcell while the bass guitars of Noel Redding provide the most stable and grounding attributes of the music with the occasional jazz inspired methods as well. The album also adds lots of new instruments to the mix adding a more diverse feel from the debut. HENDRIX contributes piano and recorder, Mitchell adds some glockenspiel and Redding offers his best foot stomping percussion. AXIS: also has the best album cover of all THE EXPERIENCE years releases!

THE JIMI HENDRIX EXPERIENCE is certainly an archival type of band beyond most our musical experiences unless you are well into you 60s at this point. I did not start out loving this album by any means. In fact i always thought HENDRIX was fairly boring! However, there is something about these albums including this second one that has the power to burrow into the future and into my DNA that has infected me with admiration. True this is not technically as adept as what has come to develop over the decades that follow, but this was truly innovative at the time and if the listener simply resonates with the music, it will surely reveal its time period prowess and charm with merely a few attentive and open-minded listens. I now regard this album as much as a brilliant masterpiece as the debut. The musical elements sewn together with the concepts are outstanding and considering this was a trio makes it all the more impressive.

JIMI HENDRIX Are You Experienced (Jimi Hendrix Experience)

Album · 1967 · Jazz Related Rock
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siLLy puPPy
Most of the time in music history progressions are made by tiny increments of experimentation where an artist tries something new and it is incorporated into the works of others and so forth and so on but the 1960s were one of those decades that was a musical equivalent of the big bang of ideas and innovation and JIMI HENDRIX and his EXPERIENCE were one of the innovators of this musical explosion with a totally new sound, style and approach on the musical landscape.

ARE YOU EXPERIENCED? was an immediate and outstanding success. Only a year before Jimi was struggling to survive covering R&B songs as a back-up guitarist but as his latent talent was gestating he managed to capture the attention of Keith Richards' girlfriend who ultimately introduced him to Chas Chandler (of the Animals) who catapulted him from rags to rock'n'roll riches in a very short time.

This album took the world by storm. Jimi perfected the feedback guitar sound that the psychedelic world only hinted at and delivered a burst of energy to the whole musical industry that single-handedly inspired the whole world we know today. He was the prototype for heavy metal as well as blues rock, psychedelic music and outlandish stage antics such as his famous burning his guitar on stage or playing with his teeth. Mr Hendrix literally dropped the equivalent of a musical bomb on the world which reverberates into the present world. Although it took me a while to appreciate the album as a whole (I always liked a few cuts) I now can't imagine how the world of rock music would be the same if Jimi hadn't contributed his signature sound to it and this album has grown on me. The varied influences ranging from soul, blues and total freakouts conspire to make one of the most influential releases in the entire history of music.

This is another one of those albums where the UK and US versions differed substantially. The UK version had the rather uninspiring black backdrop with the members posed while the much better US version had the Summer-Of-Love psychedelic cover. The track listings were different as well. For some strange reason the most familiar songs “Purple Haze,” “Manic Depression” and “Hey Joe” were left off the UK version despite being huge hit singles there.

THORS HAMMER Thors Hammer

Album · 1971 · Jazz Related Rock
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VerticalUprising
Thor's Hammer are a bit of an unknown bunch picked out from the 70's prog scene, but usually in my experiences obscure bands produce the best music, and that's definitely true here. The band's sole album and debut was released in 1971 and is as energetic as the best of them. A problem that I've found with eclectic prog bands is they feature too much emphasis on experimentation and not enough on, well, the music. Here however Thor's Hammer combines all sorts of dazzling elements, like operatic rock, symphonic rock, and hell why not throw in a few crunchy riffs here and there. It truly takes a lot of effort to be a consistent, but TH pull it off very well. Although extremely eclectic, the album is refined even when it gets to it's most climactic points. As for jazz influences, they aren't exactly prominent aside from Simon Koppel's drumming and Jesper Neehammer's occasional saxophone breaks. Hell, King Crimson used saxophone and I still don't consider them to be very jazzy. The song selection, although short is extremely well done and each track has careful time and care put into it. A major highlight is 'Not Worth Saying', a powerhouse of a song where there is not one, but two solos from guitarist Michael Brunn and from Koppel. I would sort of say that the following track 'Blind Gypsy Woman' is so similar in atmosphere that it is just a continuation of the former.

The only problem I would say I have with the album is after the third track the erratic powerful nature the album has starts to lose it's punch; there aren't any really breaking points or slower sections. I'd hate to parallel this with VDGG but on Pawn Hearts, after the loud rocker 'Lemmings', 'Man-Erg' started with a beautiful piano opening to sort of calm you down and prepare you for the rest. If the album were to have at least a few interludes that calmed the atmosphere a bit, this would be close to a perfect experience. Other than that I have no problems except for the cover. But I mean if the music's good what does that matter?

So I'd suggest take a look at this one. Eclectic prog, next to jazz-fusion is the prog sub-genre where I found has usually the best musicians. Give these guys more attention because they deserve it.

OCTOBER October

Album · 1979 · Jazz Related Rock
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VerticalUprising
Late 70's jazz with mid-60's flair.

October's a band that aren't well known at all, only releasing two albums in the span of two years. They use a fairly standard jazz fusion sound with dollops of experimentation. Something that I noticed was a hint of Krautrock, mainly like Neu! or Can in their earliest incarnation. Pat Carson has a style extremely similar Jaki Liebezeit, especially on the track 'Mainspring'. At times the instruments fumble and start to trip over each-other in a haphazardly sort of way, causing for awkward segues that sometimes don't even come, causing for a song that is mainly flat and uninteresting. The production as well is rather...bad. When there are vocals they are incoherent and practically not there, and some of the background instruments can get lost in the hubbub. This little gem however is a pretty interesting look at the jazz fusion genre when it was on the cusp of a new decade, and I would suggest forthright.

KING CRIMSON Red

Album · 1974 · Jazz Related Rock
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VerticalUprising
King Crimson: a pool of ever-changing talent rarely ceases to amaze. Most of the time I disagree with Mr. Fripp's ideas of the structure of his band, however I like to forget background information of something and just listen to the music sometimes. Red was one of these instances, and without thoughts of the details the music simply sounded better.

1974 was the year where metal was starting to spring up all over the place. Much credit was due to King Crimson for their early work to the creation of the genre, however by this time they seemed to be more of another hard prog band.While other bands like Scorpions, Sabbath, and Judas Priest all started experimenting with this newly founded genre, King Crimson continued to write elaborate compositions with much flare and musical brilliance. I will admit that I disliked much of their pre-Red content, but when this album came around everything changed. It was less about being art for arts sake and more about playing what they willed. Mind you, changes were still made and lineups were constantly fixed and re- ordered, so much chaos still happened there. The beauty about Red however is none of that translates to the music. In the recording studio, all was forgotten.

The title track is a wonderful opening, probably one of the more themed tracks as opposed to jamming, but it's utilization of ambiance and heavy guitar with no vocals bogging it down (one of the few songs where I feel like it would). 'Fallen Angel' translates to me more of a ballad, and marks one of the weaker points of the album. Fripp intended it to be more "emotional", but I found it to be rather weak in comparison to the rest of the album. One thing that never really changes is Wetton's amazing vocalizations which seem to fit into every musical circumstance. He is definitely a singer that brightened up any weak part the album has. 'One More Red Nightmare' is one of the aforementioned jams. Although the term 'jam' may not be exactly fitting, the song's length does lead to many tangents that the band members expound on briefly. Much like 'Red', this song has some fantastic riffing and great clear drumming from Bruford. Wetton's vocal skills are probably on peak at this point, along with his bass-work. Violins bring in the next track, 'Providence', most of which is much adventurous work of different instrumentations that come in at different parts. Slightly uncomfortable due to it's erratic nature; very reminiscent to Ummagumma-esque Floyd if you enjoy that sort of music. 'Starless' is a fantastic mix of everything you've heard prior in an orchestral style all in a clean twelve minutes. Shifting constantly, it never ceases to lose your attention and also does a great job closing shop.

As a final verdict, Red is undeniably wonderful. Wouldn't exactly call it a masterpiece due to some of the weaker aspects but it still shines wonderfully with what it does well and I applaud Crimson for being able to accomplish it. I think a healthy 4-4.5 stars is fitting.

jazz related rock 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.

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.

HATFIELD AND THE NORTH Classic Rock Legends

Movie · 2001 · Jazz Related Rock
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Sean Trane
Actually, this is nothing more than the TV special that got released some 12 years later after the live album. And this release does make a difference, compared to the live Cd. Actually only the respect I have for H & TN, stopped from giving less than two stars for that Cd because the recording was atrociously flat , poor quality and listless.

However, the DVD of that concert is much better and the sound quality is much better than the original Cd release. So the line-up is the same as Miller, Pyle and Sinclair are present and Sophia Domancich is replacing Dave Stewart. Although the newcomer is an impressive player, she does not however fill such gigantic shoes of Stewart. Actually on the latest 2005 tour , Alex Maguire does a credible job, though!

Highlight includes live favourites Matter Anyway and Going For a Song. A much fitter souvenir of that live one-shot reunion tour.

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