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MARIKE VAN DIJK/ Stereography Project: When does Sunday afternoon jazz cross over into being something more? How about when it's presented like it is here? The sax player's debut recording sounds way more accomplished than a debut as she mixes a large band with a string quartet and let's the meld stew nicely. Flowing with the most natural of flows, it wouldn't seem out of line if she looked at you with a perplexed look for telling her how good these work is. Check it out.

ALEX NORRIS ORGAN QUARTET/Extension Deadline: The trumpet man that took New York by storm now checks in with a platter of classic Bluenote sounds and vibes that is beholden to no one and is just scrumptious as all hell. Solid playing from all on deck rounds things out nicely and the solid, straight ahead jazzbo is going to ride this straight to good vibe heaven. Killer stuff throughout, it's hard to get any better than this. Well done.

JEREMY SISKIND/Housewarming: The award wining piano man checks in with a different kind of project, a jazz trio with a vocalist doing artsy but not off putting lyrics. The songs might not be the stuff of chart bound sounds but it's meant to be solid listening stuff and it succeeds. Easy to take and almost like a blast from the past, this is a tribute to times gone by without wearing nostalgia on it's sleeve. Something different for the times we're in that works quite well.

BIRDS OF NIGHT: Hard rocking Dallas kids are pounding away for the benefit of the young and hormonally challenged that need some contemporary outlet for their pent up emotions. With the jam band into hard rocker moves well set in place, Sons of Beavis can proudly bang their heads to this.

ODIN'S COURT/Turtles All the Way Down: Prog rock with lots of chords and weighty questions are on tap for the youthful mind that just can't stand the philistines around the local high school. A retreat into jazz meets prog on a far off street corner, you can hear the air guitar played loud and proud by all this touches. You can't blame the kids for wanting their own stuff, Pink Floyd was grandpa's music.

LAINIE COOKE/The Music is the Magic: 73 years old and swinging like a hipster on her third album---hmm, sounds like something worth a listen. Produced by Ralph Peterson, Cooke brings it together not sounding like a frustrated hausfrau acting out with some pals she could pay for the session. Certainly having her roots in the golden age of the hipster thrust, the youthful vitality and bravado she brings to the session earmarks this as a winner for anyone that prizes jazz vocal dates. John LaTouche never had it so good. Check it out.

Volume 38/Number 116
February 24, 2015
830 W. Route 22 #144
Lake Zurich, IL., 60047
CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2015 Midwest Record

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