Thursday, August 17, 2006


These are from the September/October 06 issue with Widespread Panic (ugly old white dudes - whatta surprise!) on the cover.

On Broadway Vol. 4
Winter & Winter
This is one of the more powerhouse lineups in current jazz. Drummer Paul Motian has played on hundreds of albums, as a leader and a sideman. Bassist Larry Grenadier boasts a similarly impressive track record, including sessions with John Scofield, Pat Metheny and pianist Brad Mehldau. And when saxophonist Chris Potter isn't touring and recording with Steely Dan, he's one of the brightest stars in current post-bop. So for a threesome like this to invite guests on board is a pretty ringing endorsement. Vocalist Rebecca Martin and pianist Masabumi Kikuchi don't let their hosts down. Cruising smoothly (no, that doesn't make this a "smooth jazz" album) through a program of standards, the band's interactions are in-the-moment but impeccably conceptualized, making this one of the more immediately and genuinely pleasurable jazz discs of 2006 thus far.

In Dub
Listeners who didn't even know U-Roy was still alive will be thrilled to hear his rich, full voice dominating these tracks. Love Trio is led by keyboardist and saxophonist Ilhan Ersahin, whose solos float above danceable but subtle grooves throughout the disc. U-Roy is backed by female voices, crooning the choruses and adding to the lovers rock vibe. This is digital dub, closer in spirit to the Orb, Leftfield or Bill Lasswell than the raw, subversive sonic anarchy of Lee Perry or King Tubby. Some tracks, like "Flight In Dub," are more upbeat, more clearly aimed at the dancefloor, than the majority. And the jazz background of the trio's prime movers—Ersahin, bassist Jesse Murphy and drummer Kenny Wollesen—is impossible to discern from the steady grooves being played here. There's an overriding smoothness, though, that makes the album ideal for relaxed summertime listening.

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