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New Release Round-Up 29th March 2024(presto)

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    Posted: 03 Apr 2024 at 1:16pm

new release round-up,Jazz New Release Round-Up - 29th March 2024

by Matt Groom 

In this week's new release round-up we enjoy the laid-back vibe of Cyrille Aimee's latest album A Fleur de Peau, consisting entirely of her own compositions, and there is a vinyl release of the brilliant Strands on ECM, a live 2023 meeting of three Danish jazz titans - Palle Mikkelborg, Jakob Bro and Marilyn Mazur. Lonnie Smith's Afro-Desia is reissued, an epic cosmic jazz-funk journey, and there's also a vinyl release of Chet Baker's studio sessions for the Barclay label, which he cut during his first European tour in 1955 and 1956. Azimuth's debut album gets the ECM Luminescence vinyl treatment, and Fourplay's smooth jazz landmark Between the Sheets is reissued for its 30th anniversary. And finally, Canadian blues guitarist Sue Foley pays tribute to some of the great blues women of the past. 

A Fleur de Peau 

Cyrille Aimee

A lot of people across the world think that they know singer/songwriter Cyrille Aimee: the matchless interpreter of song, steeped in the jazz tradition she learned from the gypsy masters in her native France.It's a story that has been told many times across Cyrille's career as it took her on a magic carpet ride from France to New York, and then to New Orleans, pursuing her musical vision through the works of some of the world's great composers of popular song. Now she's back with a new album and a new story to tell. A Fleur de Peau presents Cyrille in her own words, with her own original compositions presented in her own arrangements, developed in close collaboration with New York multi-instrumentalist & producer Jake Sherman- just the two of them, working up the ideas as they flowed from deep within Cyrille's heart, making music that is the most original and personal of her career.

Available Format: Vinyl Record

Strands: Live At the Danish Radio Concert Hall 

Palle Mikkelborg, Jakob Bro & Marilyn Mazur

"When we walked out on stage it felt like a homecoming," says Jakob Bro of this texturally spacious and emotionally charged live recording from Copenhagen, on which three of the defining protagonists of improvisation in Denmark, leading musicians from three generations of Danish jazz, come together. The concert, in February 2023, was particularly poignant since it marked a return to performance for trumpeter Palle Mikkelborg, who delivers some of his most thoughtful playing here. Repertoire, drawn from Jakob Bro's Returnings and Gefion albums, is addressed in spontaneous and exploratory spirit, and transformed as Marilyn Mazur's subtle percussion language of blossoming gongs and metals and rumbling drums blends with Bro's drifting and rippling washes of sound. The music's atmospheric qualities, as well its eruptive moments, are enhanced by the resonant acoustics of the Danish Radio Concert Hall.

Available Format: Vinyl Record


Lonnie Smith

The second in our Mr Bongo series opening the vault on classic recordings from the fabled Groove Merchant Records catalogue. This time the spotlight turns to the Hammond B3 organ maestro Lonnie Smith, as we proudly present a reissue of his cosmic jazz-funk journey, 'Afro-Desia'. Originally released in 1975, this much-loved album was produced by Groove Merchant label owner Sonny Lester and features the mysterious 'Compliments Of A Friend' on guitar. Considering Smith was part of George Benson's quartet in the '60s, that not so discreet veil appears to have been lifted on who this 'friend' might be. However, presumably due to contractual reasons, Benson had to remain covert for this recording. The lineup doesn't stop there though, with the likes of legendary bassist Ron Carter and Grammy award winning saxophonist Joe Lavano joining the outfit. An album of two parts, the first side sees Lonnie Smith in a spaced-out, cosmic jazz funk setting. The opener 'Afrodesia' is a funk flexing, steamy groover. Greg Hopkins and Lavano trading off on trumpet and sax respectively, as that bassline walks its way over fluttering jazz percussion and off-kilter electronics. 'Spirits Free' is an epic 15-minute free-wheeling jazz-funk workout. A mind melting trip that rises and falls, in parts spacey and serene, with Smith's organ playing complimented by stretched out horns. Before long it opens out into unconstrained fluid sections that do its title proud. Pure '70s jazz-funk at its most stellar. Side B takes a more classic soul-jazz flavour, with touches of Latin spice. 'Straight To The Point' kicks off with a carnival zing, full-frontal horn and organ lines providing a fiery party punch. It's a swinging jazz cut that used to receive spins by DJs at Russ Dewbury's Jazz Room's sessions in Brighton in the '90s. Finally, 'Favors' and 'The Awakening' close out the release. Two sure shot, quintessential Lonnie Smith firing Hammond grooves. Each conjuring up images of packed out, smokey jazz bar jams, every player letting loose with masterful improv sections to whip the crowd up into a frenzy. A truly wonderful album, and an archetypal release showcasing the height of jazz musician excellence from this era.

Available Format: CD

In Paris 

Chet Baker

2-LP gatefold limited edition - 180g virgin vinyl. This 2LP set presents all the music originally issued from Chet Baker's studio sessions made for the Barclay label during his first European tour in 1955 and 1956. The first sessions feature renowned pianist Dick Twardzik, who would die in Paris soon after the recordings were made. Chet continued touring Europe nevertheless, and before returning home to the US, taped a few more sessions for Barclay, among them the two quartet dates also presented here.

Available Format: 2 Vinyl Records



Recorded in 1977 and now reissued in ECM's audiophile Luminessence vinyl series, the debut album of the Azimuth trio was truly ahead of its time. Formed by adding Canadian-born trumpeter Kenny Wheeler to the British duo of pianist John Taylor and vocalist Norma Winstone, the group's futuristic musical palette embraced hypnotic, minimalistic pulse patterns, otherworldly synthesizer sounds, songs, collective improvisation and solo flights.
In recent seasons, the number of listeners under Azimuth's sway has grown exponentially, as the music has adapted itself to new contexts. The vast international audience that has heard fragments of Azimuth's "The Tunnel" as part of a major rap hit by Drake in 2023 (on his 200M+ streaming "IDGAF"), can now discover the original in its pristine form, still magical after all these years - as is the whole album. Produced by Manfred Eicher, this new edition with gatefold sleeve adds liner notes detailing Azimuth's story.

Available Format: Vinyl Record

Between the Sheets is the second studio album of the smooth jazz group Fourplay - comprised of acclaimed jazz musicians Bob James (piano), Lee Ritenour (guitar), Nathan East (vocals/bass), and Harvey Mason (drums). The album is well-regarded as a defining album in the smooth jazz genre and was released in August 1993 to rapturous acclaim. The album is certified gold by the RIAA, peaking at No. 2 on the Billboard Top Jazz Albums chart and No. 15 on the Billboard Top R&B Albums chart and selling over 500,000 copies in the United States.

Available Format: SACD

One Guitar Woman 

Sue Foley

Three time Blues Foundation Traditional Female Artist award winner, Sue Foley's new album 'One Guitar Woman' is a heartfelt tribute to the female pioneers of the guitar - including Memphis Minnie, Lydia Mendoza, Maybelle Carter, Ida Presti, and Sister Rosetta Tharpe. The album showcases the dexterity of Foley's acoustic nylon string guitar skills as she expands on her blues playing into other genres like Piedmont fingerpicking, traditional country, flamenco and classical.

Available Format: CD

Matt Groom - Head of Jazz

from www.prestomusic.com

Edited by snobb - 03 Apr 2024 at 1:17pm
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