MATT ULERY/Delicate Charms Live at the Green Mill: Very much a fearless set as Chicago's home town bass man takes to Chicago's home town turf for a set of mid-post pandemic freedom where he got to kick it out with his crew on some new tunes that were building up enough pressure to burst the levee. The conditions weren't ideal but they certainly were ripe for a few nights of thinking man's jazz ready to be distilled down to the best of the best for record. When someone starts hocking you about freedom, play them this and walk away.
ASAF YURIA/Exorcisms: A sax cat the was born in the 80s but knows his daddio moves like he was there when they were originally being made knows his New York sounding moves as well. Stepping up for his second album, he's a jazzbo that knows how to take it right down the middle and deliver the kind of playing you know you always love to come back to. Hot stuff.
DAVE YOUNG/Mantra: A bass man that's got a Royal Order of Canada award under his belt is the grand old man of Canadian jazz that doesn't play the old part. Leading a crew through some zesty originals and more that have been percolating for a few years, this is a fine example of what you'd pay the sitter extra to go out and hear on a week night when the cover charge is lower. It all works out beautifully in the end, just like this set from a pro that shows how it's done.
BENNY BENACK with the Steven Feifke Big Band/Season's Swinging Greetings: A fun nu holiday set that gleefully colors outside the lines when it isn't in the mood to play it straight. With a big band vibe worthy of Sinatra playing it straight with his pals, this is the contemporary sound of blended families gathering without their opinionated uncle for some holiday cheer. Delightfully played with a mind of it's own.
GABRIEL ZUCKER & the Delegation/Leftover Beats from the Edges of Time: Wow, this twofer, released on the revitalized ESP disc (appropriately) is one of those big, bold, grand and grandiose sets that could have gone wrong so easily---but doesn't. An evolving work that took several years to write and made stops along the way at Carnegie Hall, it's clearly one of those sets meant to be art first and you almost expect to hear this at an installation. Theatrical throughout, this is a work that can claim it's place next to "Escalator Over the Hill" comfortably.
(ESP Disc 5069)
ALEX HAMBURGER/And She Spoke: Alex (a woman) recorded this in a day in Switzerland. In addition to capturing the old rip and run vibe, there's a strong undercurrent of 50s flavored jazz and poetry running through this tribute to the women who came before her. Yep, it's heavy on the art chick vibe but I'll betcha dozens of goddesses in waiting will dig having this as their soundtrack.
SAMUEL MOSCHING/Ethereal Kinks: They do things a little differently in Europe and this Swiss guitarist/multi-instrumentalist is proof of that. He can do and does it all but it's done in a mostly minimalist way that doesn't hit our ears quite the same way it would if this was purely a solo instrumental set or a more fleshed out date. He's got the chops, he just needs to hone in on spinning at our speed if he wants to hit it out of the park here.
AMOS GILLESPIE/Unstructured Time: A spirited Chicago sax man reaches back for the old theme of man's inhumanity to man on this 9 part suite about turning off all that god damned noise in this god damned noisy world. With enough solid works under his belt to qualify him as another of this town's rising jewels, he's on point here as a writer, player and leader not missing a step anywhere a long the way. A really satisfying release that buoyantly goes the distance.
JOSIE FALBO/Jazzy Interlude: If you want the always delightful Ms. Falbo to stop by your holiday soiree, even briefly, you have to go to her website, www.josiefalbo.net, to cop a copy of this ep. Nice traditional stuff with almost every Chicago jazzbo that matters showing up for a lick or two, you don't even have to spike the egg nog to think this is a gasser.
ERIC GOLETZ/New Light: A bone man that basically went into the family business continues to find that after 30 successful years in the background, he's just got to many ideas to hold back and fit into his assignments. With a brilliant second album flying out of the chute, this jazzbo knows how to swing and rock the joint in top shelf style. With some snazzy ringers lurking in the grooves here, this is a wonderful set of jazz for all seasons that'll make you glad you can turn off your Zoom mic when working from home. Stellar.
December 2, 2021
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL. 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2021 Midwest Record
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