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Favorite Jazz Artists

All Reviews/Ratings

847 reviews/ratings
LOUIS ARMSTRONG - The Louis Armstrong Story, Volume I: Louis Armstrong And His Hot Five Classic (1920s) Jazz | review permalink
MILES DAVIS - Agharta Fusion | review permalink
EARTH WIND & FIRE - Gratitude 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 Fusion | review permalink
PARLIAMENT - Mothership Connection Funk | review permalink
HERBIE HANCOCK - Thrust Funk Jazz | review permalink
SUN RA - Angels and Demons at Play Progressive Big Band | review permalink
SUN RA - Sun Ra And His Astro Infinity Arkestra : 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 Fusion | review permalink
HERBIE HANCOCK - V.S.O.P. Post Bop | review permalink
MILES DAVIS - Get Up With It Fusion | review permalink
JIMI HENDRIX - Electric Ladyland (Jimi Hendrix Experience) Jazz Related Rock
MILES DAVIS - Miles Davis Quintet : Miles Smiles Post Bop | review permalink
MILES DAVIS - Nefertiti Post Bop | review permalink
MILES DAVIS - Big Fun Fusion | review permalink

See all reviews/ratings

Jazz Genre Nb. Rated Avg. rating
1 Fusion 111 3.68
2 Avant-Garde Jazz 64 3.92
3 Hard Bop 54 3.84
4 Post Bop 54 4.13
5 Soul Jazz 44 3.41
6 Big Band 40 3.83
7 World Fusion 40 3.60
8 Eclectic Fusion 37 3.76
9 RnB 36 3.61
10 Jazz Related Rock 32 3.73
11 Bop 28 4.04
12 Nu Jazz 27 3.44
13 Progressive Big Band 26 4.04
14 Funk Jazz 26 3.60
15 Funk 21 3.90
16 Pop/Art Song/Folk 21 2.81
17 Third Stream 21 3.90
18 Jazz Related Electronica/Hip-Hop 18 3.39
19 Exotica 18 3.42
20 Cool Jazz 13 3.69
21 Post-Fusion Contemporary 13 3.46
22 Latin Jazz 12 3.88
23 Dub/Ska/Reggae 12 4.04
24 Jazz Related Soundtracks 11 3.91
25 Jazz Related Improv/Composition 10 3.40
26 Blues 10 3.80
27 Vocal Jazz 10 3.75
28 21st Century Modern 9 4.22
29 Swing 8 4.00
30 Latin Rock/Soul 6 3.75
31 African Fusion 5 4.00
32 Acid Jazz 4 3.50
33 Classic (1920s) Jazz 2 4.50
34 Dixieland 1 3.50
35 Afro-Cuban Jazz 1 4.50
36 Bossa Nova 1 3.50
37 Jazz Education 1 3.50

Latest Albums Reviews

MUNDELL LOWE TV Action Jazz!

Album · 1959 · Cool Jazz
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Its hard to beat the sound of 50s jazz when it comes to classic black and white noir crime TV. So successful is the pairing that exotica collectors coined the term ‘crime jazz’ to describe the dark urban music that accompanies TV detectives and the hoods they stalk. Henry Mancini’s music for “Peter Gunn” is often given credit for inventing this genre, so it comes as no surprise that when Mundell Lowe put together his “TV Action Jazz!” LP, he included two tracks from Mancini’s popular soundtrack. “TV Action Jazz!” might seem like a totally kitsch album, and that element is there, but it also features some excellent jazz arranging and solos from top stars of the day like Herbie Mann and Donald Byrd.

The style on here is laid back hard bop and cool jazz, but this isn’t an entirely west coast band on here, more like a meeting of west and east coast cool schools. Lowe has an octet to work with and takes advantage of that set up to create creative arrangements and mini-big band tone colors. Mundell takes a majority of the solos, and his mix of bop and blues guitar riffs recall Joe Pass, only more laid back and with some interesting twists and turns here and there. Tony Scott has a beautiful tone on the clarinet which sounds great on the slinky opening melody to “Mike Hammer Riff Blues”. The young Donald Byrd does not get a lot of solo space, but when he does, he emulates the popular cool players of the era, namely Miles Davis and Chet Baker. Eddie Costas’ solos on piano and vibes carry that cool school tendency toward cleverness, humor and the non-cliché.

Although there are several well known songs on here, such as “Peter Gunn” and “Perry Mason Theme”, Lowe greatly improves these old warhorses with modern abstract arrangements that only hint at the originals. Sure, those that collect kitsch exotica are going to be attracted to this record, but it also contains all those things that made late 50s cool jazz so cool. it’s a win-win on both fronts.

DEWA BUDJANA Naurora

Album · 2021 · World Fusion
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After excursions into hard rock and classical music, “Naurora” finds Dewa Budjana returning to what he does best, performing jazz fusion flavored with the sounds of southern and eastern Asia, progressive rock and big cinematic arrangements. Many well known guests join Dewa on this one, including Joey Alexander, Gary Husband, Dave Weckl, Paul McCandless and many more. “Naurora” continues a trend we have been seeing more of lately, and that is a CD whose length is equal to the length of a vinyl LP. Eighty minutes of music can be fatiguing, whereas about forty minutes seems to be just about right.

The best tracks on “Naurora” come early on with the first three leading the way. Album opener, and title track, “Naurora”, displays what Budjana is best at. Here we have that big soundtrack style production within a multi-sectional arrangement that often uses Indonesian gamelon type figures. Within this arrangement we are given lengthy solos from Dewa, as well as Joey Alexander on piano. The following song, “Swarna Jingga”, continues with the lavish arrangements and introduces Mateus Asato on guitar. As good as Budjana is, he is almost out shone by Mateus, who performs an excellent exchange with Dewa. Possibly the best number on the album is the ballad, Kmalasana”. This is a beautiful melody played on a guitar that is capable of South Asian style note bends. As the song builds, repeating guitar lines sound like a grand mid-70s Genesis opus, I was almost expecting Phil Collins’ vocals to come soaring in for the last refrain.

The rest of the album is good, but its those first three that really shine. Dewa really deserves to be better known amongst those that appreciate supreme fusion guitar flights. If you like performers like John McLaughlin and Alan Holdsworth, then there is a good chance this album, as well as many of his other albums, will be what you are looking for.

MELVIN VAN PEEBLES Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song

Album · 1971 · Jazz Related Soundtracks
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An intense movie deserves an intense soundtrack, and that’s what we get with “Sweet Sweetback’s Badass Revenge”. A controversial movie when it was released in the early 70s, “Sweetback” is considered one of the first of the “blaxploitation” genre and the first film to feature a militant African American man in confrontation with the authorities and succeeding. Whereas some soundtracks can stand alone musically with plenty of songs that you can listen to apart from the movie, not this OST. Much of this album features sounds, jarring noises and dialog from the movie, not just music. This is a very intense album, almost avant-garde in places when snippets of dialog overlap with gun shots, police sirens, snarling dogs, yelling, screaming, pure chaotic noise, sexual climaxes and gospel choirs. No, this one is not for the timid, and if played loudly in a dark room, it can be downright intimidating. But, boring it is not. Any collector of the unusual and the bizarre in music ought to check this one out.

Side one opens with main character Sweetback answering a gospel choir acting as a sort of ‘Greek chorus’ letting him know what he is up against if he takes on ‘the man’. There is plenty of noise interspersed as this soundtrack builds a hallucinogenic inner city nightmare of confusion. “Running Song” is a fast paced jazzy rock groove with Sweetback saying over and over to his feet and legs to get moving as he runs from the law. This side ends with a relentless jazz funk workout. The band on here is no other than Earth Wind and Fire making one of their first appearances and playing a lot of old school funk and soul that sounds nothing like the slick sophisticated style they would develop later in their career.

Side two opens with a couple of RnB numbers that are probably the closest to regular music that you will hear on here, but when the off-kilter sounds of “Sanra Z” enter, it sounds like the band is falling down drunk and we are back into chaos land. What follows is some of the most intense moments yet as sections of dialog are layered on top of each other with plenty of yelling, cussing and racial epithets to spare. This album is not for everyone, but those who seek the unique and unusual will find a goldmine here.

JEREMY MONTEIRO Jeremy Monteiro & Alberto Marsico : Jazz-Blues Brothers (2021 edition)

Boxset / Compilation · 2021 · Soul Jazz
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All that modern abstract cutting edge cerebral jazz is cool and all, but sometimes you want to hear something that might inspire more of an extroverted party vibe, and that’s where an album like “Jazz-Blues Brothers” comes in. The Jazz Blues Brothers are Jeremy Monteiro on piano and Alberto Marsico on organ, two super hot blues and jazz keyboardists who really deserve more press and recognition than they currently receive. No less than Joey DeFrancesco has described Marsico as one of his favorite organ players. The rest of the band is top notch as well with Eugene Pao supplying rapid jagged bebop and fusion lines on the guitar, and also going full on rock star on a couple tunes as well. Shawn Letts is the required funky tenor player that is essential for soul jazz outings and Shawn Kelley holds down the groove on the drums. Powerhouse blues vocalist Miz Dee Longwood also joins for “I’d Rather Drink Muddy Water” and “I’d Rather Go Blind”, both recorded live with the band.

So many good tracks on here, “Opening Act” sets the mood with a classic hard bop swing and “Olympia” follows with some funky RnB. “Mount Olive” sounds like classic Eddie Harris and “Catastrophy” is rapid bebop that lets everyone show off their high speed chops. As mentioned already, there are also a couple of blues vocal numbers too. The real draw for this album though is the skill of the players. Marsico is easily one of the very hottest B3 players around, and Monteiro has a massive piano attack that recalls past masters like Art Tatum and Oscar Peterson. Add to that, Guitarist Eugene Pao, whose fiery guitarisms bring much to this soulful affair.

MAHOGANY FROG In The Electric Universe

Album · 2021 · Jazz Related Rock
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Mahogany Frog is a modern instrumental group that often gets lumped in with the contemporary prog rock crowd, but there is so much more to their music than what a simple genre label like that can describe. The Frogsters describe their music as a meeting of today’s electronica with 70s progressive rock, 60s psychedelia and 50s exotica. This isn’t too bad a description, especially if you add in movie soundtracks, particularly of the Italian persuasion. As far as the prog rock influence goes, we are not talking about the heavy-handed clichés that took hold post 1972, but more about all that great experimental music that ran from 1966 to 1972. Frog's latest outing, “In the Electric Universe”, took much longer to conceive than their previous albums and this shows in the very careful sound sculpting that takes place on here. Sounds, noises and sonic textures play a big part on this new one, and whether or not you think that emphasis has weakened their melodic content would probably be a matter of individual taste.

The opening track, “Theme from P.D.”, is like a suite with its many themes and developing sections. The next two tracks feature Frog's interest in late 60s psychedlic progressive rock filtered through an electronica lens. Follow up number, “CUBe”, is a heavy trip-hop/rock groove with a phat synth bass line. "Octavio" has a grand sound as it moves from modern RnB to cinematic glory rock. Album closer, “Sun Dog”, has a beautiful ambient melody that is slowly engulfed in noise only to finally emerge again. Much more than just a ‘rock band’, fans of electronic jam bands, classic exotica and movie soundtracks should give Mahogany Frog a chance. These guys are creating instrumental monuments that are hard to equal.

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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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