crimson-investigation

All Times Big band

For readers who like big band music we have selected a real audiophile production, mastered by the Dutch company STS-Digital, cut and pressed in Germany on 180 grams vinyl. Tunes by Duke Ellington, George Gershwin and Cole Porter are among tracks like ‘Don’t Get Around Much Anymore’, ‘Our Love Is Here To Stay’ and ‘Love […]

Take Me To The Alley

Gregory Porter

It’s unusual for ascendant artists to stick with the backing bands that got them started, which makes Gregory Porter a bit different, after all it’s his name that sells and he’d probably do just as well with session musicians. But Porter is a singer with integrity, that much is clear when you listen to this […]

amiira

Klaus Gesing, Bjorn Meyer, Samuel Rohrer

Amiira has an atmospheric essence that flows all the way through, it haunts and charms in equal measure. It builds layers of tones and mixes them with chords and then splashes rhythms that slowly build from a Tibetan monk’s bell and percussion to prog-rock played with treated saxophone. It is a very intimate album in […]

Michael-Benita-Ethics

Michel Benita

Michael Benita’s 2010 album Ethics has a rich and in places cinematic feel and sound, but is best described as a creative fusion of prog rock, blues, jazz and world music. One that provides a joyous and rewarding musical journey in the company of some highly able and original musicians, playing graceful avant garde. This […]


Rejected-Scripts

M.A Bakker

How do you pay the ultimate homage to a musician you love? Do you start a tribute band that imitates the artist’s original work, or do you create an inspired semi facsimile that is distinctive in its own right? M.A Bakker and his large band appear to have taken the latter approach with Rejected Scripts. […]

Tord-Gustavsen---What-Was-Said

Tord Gustavsen

Tord Gustavsen and his small ensemble of musicians have created something truly amazing with this album. But listeners are required to ‘work’ for the many aural pleasures it offers, this is not an obvious album even if its sound quality alone will be enough for many. To my ears Gustavsen has found a musical balance […]

Lichtungen

Matthias Loibner

What we have here is an uber unusual recording created by one of the most unique musical personalities I have ever encountered. Matthias Loibner is a rare creature with a vast musical interest and a virtuoso mastery of the hurdy gurdy. He is also inventive and keeps discovering new ways of using the instrument, rather […]

Mop-Mop-Lunar-Love

Mop Mop

It is possible to sum up this album in two words: simply mesmerizing. But reviews need to be a bit longer than that so I will continue. Lunar Love consists of tunes that transform hypnotic reggae into something akin to the work of Ethiopian musical giant Mulatu Astatke. With reggae notes underpinning an African sound […]


moogmemory

Matthew Bourne

Matthew Bourne looks like a rugged character, an image that doesn’t quite sync with the nuanced ambient ramblings of Moogmemory. Bourne is into the people and lore of the Memorymoog synthesiser, he has a strong affinity with what sounds like a particularly challenging instrument to get on song. I wasn’t aware that such things required […]

madeline-bell STI

Madeline Bell

It has been years since I last heard from Madeline Bell, an artist known for singing in Blue Mink and later a member of The (New) London Chorale. This record from the Dutch label STS Digital is not really new either. It was recorded some 15 years ago and used as a promotional CD at […]

Dylan-different

Ben Sidran

This album from 2009 is a tribute to a poet and his lyrics. Ben Sidran has taken Dylan’s words and recreated them in an original, unique and exquisite fashion. Sidran refreshes Dylan, who by now is an icon to a generation, and his large band of co conspirators breathe originality and life in to his […]

Jimmy Giuffre Western Suite

Jimmy Giuffre

In the past Jimmy Giuffre has always struck me as being a little bit too smooth, his west coast cool sound has never struck a chord but Western Suite has changed all that, now I have to hear more. A saxophonist, clarinettist and composer Giuffre composed this suite for the trio he had been playing […]


Sonar-Black-Light

Sonar

This album has many intriguing qualities; it is the most listenable avant garde music I’ve heard all year. Sonar have an expressive sound that is rhythmic and almost funky in places, but all in a prog-Sufi kind of a way. It is so precise it makes Steely Dan sound positively clumsy. Fans of King Crimson […]

darts-&-arrows

Darts & Arrows

On Altamira Darts & Arrows have a unique sound, it’s something like Frank Zappa playing with Fairport Convention. It is prog with a post punk edge. There is a touch of John Scofield here and there and a bit of a Santana, but it always sounds fresh and original. Even if the atmosphere is murky […]

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Faces

This attractively presented five disc box set gathers the entire studio output of the band created when the Small Faces’s Ronnie Lane, Ian McLagan and Kenney Jones joined forces with Rod Stewart and Ronnie Wood (ex Jeff Beck Band) in 1969 to form one of the greatest rock and roll bands of its era. Released […]

TakuyaKuroda_RisingSon

Takuya Kuroda

Born in Kobe, Japan trumpet player and leader Takuya Kuroda picked an ensemble of brilliant musicians to make Rising Son.  Kuroda is the Trumpeter Medeski, Martin and Woods should have included in their line up. Blue Note’s Rising Son is the fourth he has been Kuroda involved in. It comprises a sophisticated and refined set […]