These are not your usual recordings. They are field recordings, created by fans on cassette tapes with equipment sitting on jazz club tables or attached to house sound systems, catching a master jazz musician and his band in acts of purest creativity. Woody has been labeled by many jazz critics and historians as the "Last Great Innovator" and has influenced jazz performers of all instruments ever since his arrival on the scene in the early 60s and beyond his death in 1989. Previously unreleased field recordings from the 1970's and '80's courtesy of Woody Shaw III and Steve Turre. Produced with the help of the Woody Shaw Global Arts Foundation. Liner notes include commentary by jazz historian Tammy Kernodle and jazz trumpeter/educator Pat Harbison.
Originally released in April 1991 on the Circa imprint via Virgin Records, Blue Lines was an unprecedented mixture of breakbeats, sampling and live instrumentation with vocal styles ranging from soulful female to gritty rapping. With influences as diverse as soul, punk, reggae, dub, lover s rock, electro and hip hop, Blue Lines was truly groundbreaking, and remains one of the most unique and influential British albums ever made.
One could easily make the case for designating the Masters Apprentices as the best Australian rock band of the '60s. Featuring singer Jim Keays and songwriter/rhythm guitarist Mick Bower, the band's earliest recordings combined the gritty R&B/rock of Brits like the Pretty Things with the minor-key melodies of the Yardbirds. The compelling "Wars or Hands of Time" and the dreamy psychedelia of "Living in a Child's Dream" were undiscovered classics, although the latter was a Top Ten hit in Australia…
Adrian Younge conceived "Turn Down the Sound," one of the highlights from Venice Dawn's Something About April, as an imagined RZA-produced '60s Delfonics cut. Shortly after the release of that cinematic, psychedelic soul masterpiece, a fan put Younge in touch with the Delfonics' William Hart. The meeting led to this, the best Delfonics album since 1970. It follows four decades of sporadic new recordings, scads of dodgy re-recordings, and multiple performing versions of the group. Hart is the lone Delfonic here, but he has been a driving creative force and lead voice since its inception.
On Neck of the Woods, Neset and Herskedal demonstrate how their original compositions explore influences from classical and folk music, but always with an underlying jazz sensibility – from the soaring and uplifting classical grandeur of ‘Neck of the Woods’ to the simple and sublimely beautiful arrangement of Abdullah Ibrahim’s ‘The Wedding’, Neck of the Woods is an album of extraordinary creativity and energising charm.
Pianist Youri Egorov first came to international prominence as the clear favorite among the 1977 Van Cliburn Competition’s semi-finalists. When Egorov failed to make the finals, outraged audience members raised funds to match the $10,000 first prize and present their hero in his New York recital debut. The critics raved, and Egorov’s career took off, flourishing for 10 years until his tragically early death from AIDS in 1988 at age 33.
Michael Gira claims that Swans' The Seer took 30 years to make: "it's the culmination of every previous Swans album as well as any other music I've ever made, been involved in or imagined." This is not hyperbole. Two years after My Father Will Lead Me Up to a Rope to the Sky, The Seer is the most sprawling, ambitious, thoughtfully conceived and tightly performed recording in the band's catalog – also not hyperbole – over two discs, two hours, and 11 tracks. And it is not an endurance test, but an argument for compulsive listening. It's an exquisitely wrought journey through post-rock, electronic soundscapes, haunting acoustic songs, punishing noise, and (lots of) percussion.
Maybe it's just the times but Toby Keith has had drinking on his mind, calling his 2011 album Clancy's Tavern, which rode up the charts on the back of the boozy hit "Red Solo Cup" and now, for its sequel, Keith serves up Hope on the Rocks, an album where he finds his way to "Cold Beer Country" and complains that he hasn't had a drink all day. He also admits that "I Like Girls Who Drink Beer," the confession coming as no great surprise and, truth be told, there are no great surprises throughout Hope on the Rocks. Keith has whittled the album down to his basics, finding space for only three love songs – the heartbroken "Haven't Seen the Last of You"…