Snowpoet, Oportet, and Hobby Horse

Artist: Snowpoet

Title: Wait For Me

Label: Edition Records

Release Date: 02/19/21

Personnel: Lauren Kinsella – Vocals; Chris Hyson – Piano, Synths; Matthew Robinson – Piano, Synths; Josh Arcoleo – Saxophone; Dave Hamblett – Drums (except on ‘With You’); Drums on ‘With You’ – Lloyd Haines; Alex Haines – Guitar; Alice Zawadski – Violin

Impression: Snowpoet follow up 2018’s outstanding Thought You Knew with an even more refined infectiousness with what is thus far one of the most satisfying listens of the year.

More Info: Edition Records

Listen Here:

Buy Here: Bandcamp

 

 

Artist: Oportet

Title: Scandala

Label: Auand Records

Release Date: 02/19/21

Personnel: Marco Fiorenzano – piano; Umberto Lepore – double bass, bells, objects; Stefano Costanzo – drums, bells, bow and objects; Davide Maria Viola – cello (on tracks 1 and 4)

Impression: This set was recorded live in front of a group of students to demonstrate the increasingly lost skill of capturing live performance on the first take and impressively, Costanzo and crew choke odd meters into submission and mold tempos and moods as only truly locked-in musicians can.

More Info: Auand Records

Listen Here:

Buy Here: Bandcamp

 

 

Artist: Hobby Horse

Title: Goodnight Moon

Label: Auand Records

Release Date: 04/27/20

Personnel: Stefano Tamborrino: cello, piano, synth, voice, trombone, guitar, drum machine, drums, glockenspiel; Joe Rehmer: double bass, keyboards; Dan Kinzelman: trumpet, piano, electronic drums, clarinet, bass clarinet, keyboards, sax

Impression: This categorically wonderful record born out of limitation snuck out last year as the pandemic began to rage and is perhaps a more mollifying suite of imaginary landscapes, originally conceived as lullabies.

More Info: Auand Records

Listen Here:

Buy Here: Bandcamp

 

 

The 2018 NPR Music Jazz Critics Poll

Happy new year and best wishes to everyone for a brilliant 2019!  Before I break the slumber and write some new reviews, I’d like to look back at the best of 2018…

The 2018 NPR Music Jazz Critics Poll is out, and Francis Davis let me contribute again this year.

The overview results are here

Davis’ commentary is here

and my contribution is here

My best of 2018 are as follows…

 

NEW RELEASES

Myra Melford’s Snowy Egret, The Other Side of Air (Firehouse 12)

Cécile McLorin Salvant, The Window (Mack Avenue)

Mary Halvorson, Code Girl (Firehouse 12)

Poline Renou, Matthieu Donarier, and Sylvain Lemêtre, Adieu Mes Très Belles (Yolk)

Tyshawn Sorey, Pillars (Firehouse 12)

Michael Formanek & Elusion Quartet, Time Like This (Intakt)

Sungjae Son, Near East Quartet (ECM)

Dan Weiss, Starebaby (Pi)

Nick Millevoi’s Desertion Trio with Jamie Saft, Midtown Tilt (Shhpuma)

Snowpoet, Thought You Knew (Edition)

 

REISSUES

John Coltrane, 1963: New Directions (Impulse!)

Alice Coltrane, Carnegie Hall ’71 (Hi Hat)

Keith Jarrett, La Fenice (ECM)

 

VOCAL

Cécile McLorin Salvant, The Window (Mack Avenue)

 

DEBUT

WildSonicBlooms, Where We Overlap (Rattle)

 

LATIN

David Virelles, Igbó Alákorin (The Singer’s Grove) Vol. I and II (Pi) *

 

* somehow, my vote for David Virelles’ excellent Igbó Alákorin (The Singer’s Grove) Vol. I and II didn’t make it onto the list.