Streamnotes: May 27, 2024

Most of these are short notes/reviews based on streaming records from Napster (formerly Rhapsody; other sources are noted in brackets). They are snap judgments, usually based on one or two plays, accumulated since my last post along these lines, back on April 29. Past reviews and more information are available here (23921 records).

Recent Releases

Melissa Aldana: Echoes of the Inner Prophet (2024, Blue Note): Tenor saxophonist, from Chile, seventh album since 2010, second on Blue Note, quintet with piano (Fabian Almazan), guitar (Lage Lund), bass, and drums. B+(**) [sp]

Karrin Allyson: A Kiss for Brazil (2023 [2024], Origin): Jazz singer, originally from Kansas but she's given her heart to Brazil, and she's credible enough for this native Kansan. Cover notes Rosa Passos as "special guest," but credits only show two vocals and one rhythm guitar track. The essential guitarist is Yotam Silberstein, with Harvie S on bass, Vitor Gonçalves keyboards, and Rafael Barrata percussion. B+(**) [cd]

John Ambrosini: Songs for You (2024, self-released): Jazz singer, plays piano, seems to be his first album (only Discogs credit is for an eponymous 1997 group album, The Trees), wrote two songs, the rest coming from what we may dub the rock-standards era: Beatles, Billy Joel, Elton John, James Taylor, Stephen Stills, Walter Becker with Donald Fagen or Rickie Lee Jones. Draws on Randy Breker, David Binney, and Joel Frahm for horn spots. Well done, but the familiar songs are not all old friends, and it still seems odd to standardize songs from such an auteurish era. B [cd] [06-01]

Roxana Amed: Becoming Human (2024, Sony Music Latin): Jazz singer from Argentina, half-dozen albums since 2004, based in US since 2013, originals in English and Spanish, backed by piano (Martin Bejerano), sax (Mark Small), trombone (Kendall Moore), bass, and drums. One choice cut here is "We Built a Home," which reminds me of Roswell Rudd and Sheila Jordan. B+(***) [cd]

Matt Andersen: The Big Bottle of Joy (2023, Sonic): Canadian blues guitarist-singer-songwriter, regular albums since 2004. I don't see credits, but the backup singers loom large here. Actually, it's all big and joyful. B+(**) [sp]

Anitta: Funk Generation (2024, Republic): Brazilian "baile funk" singer-songwriter, Larissa de Macedo Machado, debut 2013, this follows a similarly named 2023 EP, repeats the first single "Funk Rave," expanded to 15 short, hard-hitting tracks, 35:14. B+(***) [sp]

Nia Archives: Silence Is Loud (2024, Hijinxx/Island): British jungle DJ/producer, last name Hunt, has several EPs since 2021, first album takes a big step toward turning her into a dance-pop star. A- [sp]

Byron Asher's Skrontch Music: Lord, When You Send the Rain (2022 [2024], Sinking City): Clarinetist, originally from Maryland, based in New Orleans since 2011, group name from a 2019 album, credit here is "reeds," same for three others, brass section is cornet-trombone-sousaphone, rhythm piano-bass-drums-live electronics. B+(**) [bc]

Jazmin Bean: Traumatic Livelihood (2024, Island): English pop singer-songwriter, parents from bands Quireboys and Fluffy, first album, Wikipedia page throws out a lot of genre tags that make little sense to me (pop metal, pastel goth, trap metal, hyperpop, horror pop), various personality quirks, and a sideline in "cruelty-free, vegan makeup." Music is a shade denser and artsier than pure pop, but I like it fine. Lyric noted: "I hate what I am, I hate what I've done/ I hate that I'm scared, I hate that it's not fun." Also: "I'm the bitch with the gun." B+(**) [sp]

Bruno Berle: No Reino Dos Afetos 2 (2024, Psychic Hotline): Singer-songwriter, from Maceio, in northeast Brazil, fourth album since 2014, sequel to his 2022 release. Laid back and slightly off-kilter. B+(***) [sp]

Duane Betts: Wild & Precious Life (2023, Royal Potato Family): Son of Allman Brothers guitarist Dickey Betts (1943-2024), namesake obvious. First album under his own name but he's been playing in Allman and/or Betts bands since 2005, and quite capably recycles their trademark sound. B+(*) [sp]

Yaya Bey: Ten Fold (2024, Big Dada): R&B singer-songwriter from Brooklyn, fifth album since 2016. Nice flow, has some grit. B+(***) [sp]

Pat Bianchi: Three (2023 [2024], 21H): Organ player, debut 2002, tenth or so album, back-to-basics trio with Troy Roberts (sax) and Colin Stranahan (drums). Opens and closes strong with "Love for Sale" and "Cheek to Cheek." B+(***) [sp]

Black Lives: People of Earth (2024, Jammin' Colors): A "large and humanistic ensemble" combining musicians from "the U.S., Africa, the Caribbean, and Europe," bassist Reggie Washington seems to have been the catalyst, assembling the album Black Lives: From Generation to Generation in 2021 in response to the Black Lives Matter demonstrations. He took the evolving group on tour of Europe in 2022-23, and they returned with this second album. Mostly names I recognize, but too many to list here (start with Cheick Tidiane Seck and Immanuel Wilkins, with seven more vocals/spoken word artists). B+(***) [sp]

Carsie Blanton: After the Revolution (2024, self-released): American singer-songwriter, based in New Orleans, albums since 2005, lefty politics, no complaints from me on that score, but I wish there more songs like "Cool Kids" I don't have to think about. B+(***) [sp]

Carsie Blanton: The Red Album Vol. 1 (2024, self-released, EP): Six songs, 13:25, first appeared as a thing (I think) as a bonus CD packed along with the LP of After the Revolution, though it may have had some virtual existence earlier -- "Rich People" has reportedly "gone viral," which Blanton herself claims didn't earn her a dime. Jazzy, explicitly political (first two songs are "Ugly Nasty Commie Bitch" and "You Ain't Done Nothing (If You Ain't Been Called a Red", but the one about "Democrats" shooting in you in the back hits ever harder. I don't know whether she wrote or found them, but I'd like to hear more. B+(***) [yt]

Borderlands Trio [Stephan Crump/Kris Davis/Eric McPherson]: Rewilder (2023 [2024], Intakt, 2CD): Bass/piano/drums, third group album, joint credits, title piece split into "I" (51:49) and "II" (53:04). B+(***) [sp]

Muireann Bradley: I Kept These Old Blues (2021-23 [2023], Tompkins Square): Irish folkie, plays guitar, first album, sings twelve old blues, three from Mississippi John Hurt, three following arrangements by Stefan Grossman (plus one John Fahey). B+(***) [sp]

Britti: Hello, I'm Britti (2024, Easy Eye Sound): New Orleans singer-songwriter Brittany Guerin, first album, produced by Dan Auerbach. B+(**)

The Bobby Broom Organi-sation: Jamalot Live (2014-19 [2024], Steele): Guitarist, pulled this together from two tours (the latter opening for Steely Dan), both trios with Ben Paterson (organ) and Kobie Watkins (drums), playing songs you know: "Superstition," "Layla," "Tennessee Waltz," "Jitterbug Waltz," "House of the Rising Sun," and a medley in 2019. B+(*) [cd]

Cedric Burnside: Hill Country Love (2024, Provogue): Blues singer-songwriter, grandson of R.L. Burnside, his debut was their 2001 Burnside on Burnside, started as a drummer but plays guitar here, as does Luther Dickinson. B+(**) [sp]

Isrea Butler: Congo Lament (2023 [2024], Vegas): Trombone player, lead in the Count Basie Orchestra ghost band, credits Ike Quebec and Bennie Green albums for inspiring this quintet with Doug Lawrence (tenor sax), Dave Loeb (piano), bass, and drums. Seven covers: two from Green, one Quebec, a Stanley Turrentine, the standards including a delightful "Pennies From Heaven," and a Ma Rainey blues to close. B+(***) [cd] [06-01]

Nicola Caminiti: Vivid Tales of a Blurry Self-Portrait (2022 [2024], self-released): Italian saxophonist (alto/soprano), born in Messina, several side credits from 2018 but this appears to be his first album leading. Quartet with piano (Lex Korten), bass (Ben Tiberiti), and drums (Miguel Russell). Impressive. B+(***) [cd]

James Carter: Un (Unaccompanied Baritone Saxophone) (2023 [2024], J.M.I.): Originally a tenor saxophonist, emerged as a prodigiuos star in the 1990s, but (unlike David Murray, similarly dominant in the 1980s) allowed himself to be limited by major labels with their focus on fewer, fancier releases, and struggled when the labels dried up on him -- he has little to show under his own name since his last EmArcy in 2011 (other than a 2018 Organ Trio as his one shot on Blue Note). But he's still working, still impressive when he gets an airing. Along the way, he picked up every other saxophone, and developed enough of a reputation for baritone that that's the one slot he regularly places high in DownBeat's polls. Hence this solo album, eight tracks, 41:06, pretty much as awesome and aggravating as you'd expect. B+(**) [sp]

Edmar Castañeda World Ensemble: Viento Sur (2023, self-released): Harp player, from Colombia, ten or so albums since 2005. Not much info available, but I gather the singer is his wife, Andrea Tierra, and the band includes Felipe Lamoglia (sax), Ryan Keberle (trombone), Helio Alves (piano), Grégoire Maret (harmonica), and Itai Kriss (flute), plus percussionists. B+(***) [sp]

A Certain Ratio: It All Comes Down to This (2024, Mute): British new wave band, name from a Brian Eno lyric, founded 1977, released albums 1980-96 (starting on Factory Records, with Joy Division and New Order), one more in 2008, resumed in 2020. What you might call a "return to form." B+(**) [sp]

Layale Chaker & Sarafand: Radio Afloat (2023 [2024], In a Circle): Violinist, sings some, group with (Jake Charkley (cello), Philip Golub (piano/keyboards), Sam Minais (bass), and John Hadfield (drums). The occasional vocals lend this a Middle Eastern air, while the variety in the instruments frees the violin up as the engaging solo lead. A- [cd]

Rachel Chinouriri: What a Devastating Turn of Events (2024, Elektra): English singer-songwriter, family from Zimbabwe, first album after a couple of EPs. B+(***) [sp]

Cindy Lee: Diamond Jubilee (2024, Realistik Studios): Per Wikipedia: "the drag queen hypnagogic pop project of Canadian musician Patrick Flegel, former guitarist and lead singer of Women." Fifth album, 32 songs, over two hours. Lots of things here, probably could be edited into a good album, maybe two, but as is it doesn't sustain the interest it first elicited. B+(*) [yt]

Gary Clark Jr.: JPEG RAW (2024, Warner): Blues singer-songwriter, got a lot of hype with his 2012 major label debut, can't say as I was much impressed. Title acronym for "Jealousy, Pride, Greed, Rules, Alter Ego, Worlds." Five (of twelve) songs feature guests, with Stevie Wonder and George Clinton the big names. B- [sp]

Carl Clements: A Different Light (2023 [2024], Greydisc): Saxophonist (tenor/soprano here; also bansuri, from his interest in Hindustani classical music), has several albums since 2004 (nine per website). Quartet with piano (Chase Morrin), bass (Bruno Råberg), and drums (Gen Yoshimura). Original pieces, some quite impressive. B+(***) [cd]

A.G. Cook: Britpop (2024, New Alias): British electronica producer, initials for Alexander Guy, best known under the alias PC Music but third album under this moniker, a long one (three parts: "Past," "Present," "Future"; 24 tracks, 99:43 total). B+(**) [sp]

Charley Crockett: $10 Cowboy (2024, Son of Davy): Country singer-songwriter from Texas, plays guitar, more than a dozen albums since 2015. Easy does it. B+(**) [sp]

Amalie Dahl's Dafnie: Står Op Med Solen (2023 [2024], Sonic Transmissions/Aguirre): Saxophonist, has a previous group album, one more; group includes trumpet, trombone, bass, and drums. B+(***) [sp]

DIIV: Frog in Boiling Water (2024, Fantasy): Post-punk/dream pop/shoegaze band from Brooklyn, fourth album since 2012, singer-guitarist Zachary Cole Smith and guitarist Andrew Bailey from the original band, two others from 2013/2015. B+(*) [sp]

Chris Duarte: Ain't Giving Up (2023, Provogue): Blues-rock singer-songwriter from Texas, regular albums since 1987, like so many his calling card is his guitar. B+(*) [sp]

Yelena Eckemoff: Romance of the Moon (2023 [2024], L&H Production): Russian pianist, moved to US in 1991, got into jazz and has recorded regularly since 2010. Very nice quintet, "inspired by the poems of Federico Garcia Lorca," recorded in Italy with Paolo Fresu (trumpet), Riccardo Bertozzi (guitar), Luca Bulgarelli (bass), and Stefano Bagnoli (drums). B+(***) [cd]

Billie Eilish: Hit Me Hard and Soft (2024, Interscope): First two names, skipping Pirate and surnames Baird (mother) and O'Connell (father), also discarded by brother Finneas, who seems to be the composer in their songwriting team, but she's undoubtedly the persona, an artist with a knack for seeing the wonder of the peculiar world she lives in: home-schooled, DIY-recorded, Grammy winner at 17, third album here at 22, most likely another smash -- but once again, I'm slow on the uptake, nudged on by nuggets of genius peeking out from soft and sly but seemingly unremarkable pop schist. Not totally sure here, but I'm probably saving myself some paperwork on down the line (like I had to do last time). A- [sp]

Tinsley Ellis: Naked Truth (2024, Alligator): Blues-rock singer-songwriter-guitarist based in Atlanta, started in the Heartfixers in 1982, went solo in 1988 and has 20+ albums since. Wrote nine songs here, covers Son House (quite credibly), Willie Dixon, and Leo Kottke. B+(**) [sp]

William Lee Ellis: Ghost Hymns (2023, Yellow Dog): Folkie singer-songwriter from Memphis, plays guitar, opens solo with a front porch blues, picks up some banjo and fiddle for the Jesus-namechecking second song, called "Flood Tale." Both of those songs grabbed me immediately, but then he wandered into other less immediately appealing fare. Still worth the thought. B+(***) [sp]

Empirical: Wonder Is the Beginning (2022 [2024], Whirlwind): British group, half-dozen albums since 2007, led by bassist-composer Tom Farmer, with Jason Rebello (piano), Shaney Forbes (drums), Lewis Wright (vibes), and Nathaniel Facey (alto sax), plus Alex Hitchcock (tenor sax, 3 tracks). B+(**) [sp]

English Teacher: This Could Be Texas (2024, Island): British group, from Leeds, Lily Fontaine the singer, first album after a 2022 EP, much touted, not unreasonably. B+(***) [sp]

Ethel & Layale Chaker: Vigil (2022 [2024], In a Circle): As best I can tell -- my eyes have gotten so bad it pains me to search out the recording date and credits, let alone decipher the microscopic booklet -- Chaker is a violinist and composer of half of this, and Ethel is her group -- three more violins and a cello -- members of which composed most of the rest. So a strings group, certainly qualifies as chamber jazz. B+(***) [cd]

Robert Connelly Farr: Pandora Sessions (2023, self-released): Guitarist, growler, from "Bolton, Mississippi, home of Charley Patton, Sam Chatmon & the Mississippi Sheiks," a protege of Jimmy "Duck" Holmes, plays "thunderous back alley blues" that are "menacing, guttural." Indeed, the sound is very striking at first, but then sort of shrinks, folding back on itself. B+(***) [sp]

Lawrence Fields: To the Surface (2023 [2024], Rhythm 'N' Flow): Pianist, from St. Louis, "long-awaited" debut album -- he has side credits back to 2007, including Joe Lovano and Christian Scott -- a trio with Yasushi Nakamura (bass) and Corey Fonville (drums), originals plus one cover ("I Fall in Love Too Easily"). B+(**) [sp]

Samantha Fish & Jesse Dayton: Death Wish Blues (2023, Rounder): Blues singer-songwriter-guitarist from Kansas City, a dozen or so albums since 2009, some with co-credits (like 2011's Girls With Guitars), this her first with Dayton, a rockabilly/outlaw country artist with more records going back to 1995. They're rough enough to get on each other's nerves, but the exception, a Fish ballad "No Apology," is an oasis of calm in the enveloping chaos. B+(**) [sp]

Sue Foley: One Guitar Woman: A Tribute to the Female Pioneers of Guitar (2024, Stony Plain): Blues guitarist, singer, has written most of her songs since her 1992 debut (Young Girl Blues), mostly covers here, drawing songs from Elizabeth Cotten, Maybelle Carter, Rosetta Tharpe, and others. B+(***) [sp]

Roberto Fonseca: La Gran Diversión (2023, 3ème Bureau/Wagram): Cuban pianist, a dozen or so albums since 1999. A full roster of Cuban musicians, including vocalists, with a guest spot for Regina Carter (violin). Cover depicts a party. Music bears that out. B+(**) [sp]

Adam Forkelid: Turning Point (2023 [2024], Prophone): Swedish pianist, fourth album since 2005, quartet with guitar (Carl Mörner Ringström), bass (Niklas Fernqvist), and drums (Daniel Fredriksson). Original pieces, smart and steady. B+(***) [cd]

Amaro Freitas: Y'Y (2024, Psychic Hotline): Brazilian pianist, from Recife, fourth album since 2016. Nine tracks, some solo, some with a guest or two, including Shabaka Hutchings (flute), Brandee Younger (harp), Jeff Parker (guitar), and Hamid Drake (drums). B+(**) [sp]

Beth Gibbons: Lives Outgrown (2024, Domino): English singer-songwriter, voice of Portishead in the 1990s, treats this as her debut solo album, although she has a 2002 duo with Rustin Man and is featured on a 2019 recording of Henryk Górecki's Symphony No. 3. Some remarkable music here. Songs to match. A- [sp]

Nicole Glover: Plays (2024, Savant): Tenor saxophonist, from Oregon, First Record self-released in 2015, this is her second on Savant, trio with Tyrone Allen and Kayvon Gordon plus guest Steve Nelson (vibes). Found line fits: "a deep, rich tone, but also lots of modern edges." Opens strong, but holds you with ballads. A- [sp]

Jon Gordon: 7th Ave South (2023 [2024], ArtistShare): Alto/soprano saxophonist, albums start in 1989, "revisits the 1980s heyday of jazz in Greenwich Village," with a fairly large group -- nine musicians, a choir, vocals on three tracks (including a cover of "Here, There, and Everywhere"). Sax is engaging, but otherwise a mixed bag. B+(*) [cd]

Gov't Mule: Peace . . . Like a River (2023, Concord): Southern rock jam band, founded 1994 as an Allman Brothers spinoff, Warren Haynes (guitar/vocals) and Matt Abts (drums) founders still carrying on. This one is especially long. B- [sp]

Hawkwind: Stories From Time and Space (2024, Cherry Red): British space rock group, debut 1970, slowed down after 1982 (releases in 1985, 1988, 1990) but with never more than a 5-year break (2000-05) and only one more (2012-16) more than two years. Vocalist Dave Brock (guitar, keybs) remains from the original group, with Richard Chadwick (drums) from 1990, one from 2016, the other two from 2021. Nothing in my database since Robert Calvert left in 1979. This sounds about right, but not enough to matter. B [sp]

Aaron Yale Heisler: Zoot's Soprano EP [Alternate Takes and Remixes From the Bechet Century] (2022-23 [2024], Bathurst Manor, EP): Guitarist, from Toronto, released an album called The Bechet Century in 2023, on the 100th anniversary of the soprano saxophonist's first recordings. Solo guitar with some vocals, mostly leftovers, nine tracks, 20:49, not that close to the model anyway (or maybe I just have trouble imaging Bechet without his rhythm?). B [sp]

Aaron Yale Heisler: Guitar Sketches (Toronto 2008-24) (2008-24 [2024], Bathurst Manor): Solo guitar again, with a bit of vocal, did a Sidney Bechet tribute last time, adds Charles Gayle to his list of inspirations, which he handles in a uniquely low-key way. B+(***) [sp]

Makiko Hirabayashi Trio: Meteora (2022 [2023], Enja): Japanese pianist, based in Copenhagen since 1990, side credits since 1996, several own albums since 2006. Trio with Klavs Hovman (bass) and Marilyn Mazur (drums). B+(***) [sp]

Hiromi's Sonicwonder: Sonicwonderland (2023, Telarc): Japanese pianist, last name Uehara, studied at Berklee, debut album 2003, a dozen more since, has classical skills, likes electronics, wrote jingles before moving into (and sometimes out of) jazz. This one jams Adam O'Farrill (trumpet) into the sonic tapestry, which helps. Some vocals. B+(*) [sp]

Julia Holter: Something in the Room She Moves (2024, Domino): Singer-songwriter, from Milwaukee, eleventh album since 2007 (including three early DIY efforts), crafts atmospheric art-pop that I've never particularly related to, although this one has some appeal. B+(*) [sp]

Munir Hossn/Ganavya: Sister, Idea (2023, Ropeadope, EP): Duo, recorded in Miami, the former a guitarist/vocalist from Brazil, the latter a vocalist/bassist (last name Doraiswamy, born in New York but raised in Tamil Nadu), each with a couple of independent previous albums. Seven songs, 19:46. B+(*) [sp]

Hovvdy: Hovvdy (2024, Arts & Crafts): Indie rock duo from Austin, Charlie Martin and Will Taylor, fifth album since 2016, tuneful, easy going, slight, just a whiff of country. B+(*) [sp]

Ibibio Sound Machine: Pull the Rope (2024, Merge): London-based afro-funk band, led by vocalist Eno Williams (UK-born, of Nigerian parents), the band including a guitarist from Ghana and a percussionist from Brazil. Choice groove: "Dance in the Rain." B+(**) [sp]

Christone "Kingfish" Ingram: Live in London (2023, Alligator, 2CD): Blues singer-songwriter from Clarksdale, Mississippi, plays guitar, has two previous studio albums. Pretty young (23), but solid. Run time: 107.12. B+(*) [sp]

Mikko Innanen Autonomous: Hietsu (2021 [2024], Fiasko): Finnish saxophonist, in a live set named for the venue in Helsinki, with Håvard Wiik (piano), Ajntti Lötjönen (bass), and Peter Bruun (drums), with some extra strings (and contrabass guitar). B+(**) [bc]

Jazz at the Ballroom: Flying High: Big Band Canaries Who Soared (2024, Jazz at the Ballroom): Standards from the big band era, open with an instrumental "On the Sunny Side of the Street," followed by fourteen songs by six vocalists: Gretje Angel, Carmen Bradford, Olivia Chindamo, Jane Monheit, Vanessa Perea, and Champian Fulton, who plays piano throughout, leading two bass-drums trios. B+(***) [cd]

Eric Johanson: The Deep and the Dirty (2023, Ruf): Louisiana-born blues-rock singer-songwriter, guitarist, moved to New Zealand after Katrina but returned to New Orleans in 2010, has a half-dozen albums since 2017. B+(*) [sp]

Rickie Lee Jones: Pieces of Treasure (2022 [2023], BMG/Modern): Fifteenth studio album, going back to her eponymous debut in 1979, with its jazzy freak hit single, produced by Russ Titelman, who returns here for this collection of ten standards. They picked great songs, but slowed them way down, exposing the cracks in her voice, but little else. B- [sp]

Dawn Landes: The Liberated Woman's Songbook (2024, Fun Machine Music): Folkie singer-songwriter, debut 2005, moved from Kentucky to NYC to North Carolina, found these eleven songs, going as far back as 1830, in a book published in 1971, and finds them "as timely today as they were then." B+(**) [sp]

Lauren Alaina: Unlocked (2023, Big Loud, EP): Country singer-songwriter, from Georgia, real name continues: Kristine Suddeth, had a run on American Idol at 17, got her an album that year (2011), two more since (one I panned), now this credible-sounding six song, 18:40 EP. Sample: "you ain't in the heels she's walkin' in, so don't judge a book by its cover." B+(**) [sp]

Li'l Andy: The Complete Recordings of Hezekiah Procter (1925-1930) (2022, Back-to-Wax): This is the work of Canadian Andrew McClellan, touted as "Montreal's best country songwriter," his music as "roots-based Americana that actually deserves to be made." Procter is a fiction, the hero of the singer's debut novel, who not only wrote all of this "two-disc, 29-song box set" (ok, not all -- not "Lovesick Blues," and I'm not sure what else), but took pains to get the primitive sound by recording it on a 1937-vintage Webster-Chicago wire recorder (with eleven songs also recorded on a Tascam 38 half-inch analog tape machine, if you care to compare). I'm quite impressed, but also a bit overwhelmed, and not having the box leaves me tempted to hedge a bit. B+(***) [sp]

Dua Lipa: Radical Optimism (2024, Warner): Albanian, moved to London to model, switched to dance-pop for her multi-platinum 2017 debut, third album preceded by the breakout single "Houdini." Eleven snappy, upbeat songs, just fine for 36:35. A- [sp]

Live Edge Trio With Steve Nelson: Closing Time (2023 [2024], OA2): Trio of Ben Markley (piano), Seth Lewis (bass), and Andy Wheelock (drums), with the vibraphonist most prominent as guest. Highlight is a Horace Silver cover (of course). B+(**) [cd]

Lloyiso: Seasons (2023, Universal, EP): South African singer-songwriter, Loyiso Gijana, singles since 2018, first album but just seven songs, 23:02, slow, soulful ballads. B+(*) [sp]

John Lurie: Painting With John (2021-23 [2024], Royal Potato Family): Founder of the Lounge Lizards, a jazzy fusion group which recorded four studio and more live albums 1981-98; also did a shtick as Marvin Pontiac, and recorded a few soundtracks, including Fishing With John for an unscripted TV series he did in 1991. This collects music from his more recent TV series, with three seasons on HBO Max. Scattered pieces, most miniatures, some narrated, most minor but often interesting, ends with a Lounge Lizards delight. Spotify counts 56 songs, "about" 75 minutes. B+(***) [sp]

The Taj Mahal Sextet: Swingin' Live at the Church in Tulsa (2023 [2024], Lightning Rod): Folk blues great, first record 1968, no recording date I can see here, but one source had him at 81 in 2023, which is info enough. Six originals, four covers (three blues, one Hawaiian). Seems to be in strong voice, buoyed by a strong band. B+(***) [sp]

Dom Martin: Buried in the Hail (2023, Forty Below): Blues-rock singer-songwriter-guitarist, from Belfast, Northern Ireland, third album, ten originals plus a power ballad rendition of Willie Nelson's "Crazy." B+(*) [sp]

Abbey Masonbrink: Rising (2024, self-released): Singer-songwriter from Kansas, first album, plays banjo but not bluegrass, with producer Rod Pope (Get Up Kids) going for a denser, more electronic mix. Returns to form with a somber, piquant "I Saw the Light." B+(**) [sp]

Leyla McCalla: Sun Without the Heat (2024, Anti-): Folk singer-songwriter, born in New York, raised in New Jersey, parents from Haiti, played cello and banjo in Carolina Chocolate Drops and Our Native Daughters, fifth solo album. But doesn't folk music need some roots to locate itself? I'm not sure I recognize any here, which may make it more interesting but less immediately satisfying. For that, you need the message. Title expands to "you want the crops without the plow/ you want the rain without the thunder/ you want the ocean without the roar of its waters, can't have the sun without the heat"; also: "And there's so much wrong/ only we can change ourselves." And finally: "I want to believe in the light/ I have been given." A- [sp]

Dave McMurray: Grateful Deadication 2 (2023, Blue Note): Tenor saxophonist, from Detroit, started with Albert King, was in Was (Not Was) and Griot Galaxy, first solo album 1989, second 1996. Got the idea of doing a Grateful Dead tribute after meeting Bob Weir in 2019, released one in 2021, and here's a second. Pleasant-enough songs, some I recognize despite having no interest in the band since the early 1970s, helped with organ and a bit of grit in the sax. Some vocals, not sure whether they hurt or help. B+(*) [sp]

Charles McPherson: Reverence (2023 [2024], Smoke Sessions): Alto saxophonist, started with Charles Mingus and Barry Harris in 1961, first album as leader was Bebop Revisited! (1965), has worked steadily ever since, recording this date at 83, still revisiting bebop, with Terell Stafford (trumpet), Jeb Patton (piano), David Wong (bass), and Billy Drummond (drums). Ends with his "Ode to Barry." B+(***) [sp]

Mdou Moctar: Funeral for Justice (2024, Matador): Multiple sources refer to artist as a band, but name started as an alias for its leader, a Tuareg guitarist-singer from Niger, Mahamadou Souleymane, with albums starting on Sahel Sounds in 2013, then breaking out on American indie label Matador in 2021, with this one racking up a Metacritic 91 from 12 reviews in its first week. Reviews use words like "incendiary" and "blazing," which make me wonder how long they've been following. B+(***) [sp]

Modney: Ascending Primes (2023 [2024], Pyroclastic, 2CD): Violinist Josh Modney, based in New York, has a couple previous albums, most ambitiously the 3-CD Engage (2018). This one is pretty ambitious as well, starting solo and ascending to "undectet" (11-piece orchestra). Unfortunately, I played the second disc first, and didn't discover the first until I was more than done with the second. Not that I'm not impressed, but violin can rub me the wrong way, so there's a lot here I simply don't enjoy. But I still feel like its monumental-ness deserves some kind of credit. B+(*) [cd]

Mike Monford: The Cloth I'm Cut From (2021 [2024], self-released): Alto saxophonist, with spoken word, from Detroit (I gather; sorry but I can't read anything on the CD, and I'm not doing much better with the hype sheet). Website adds Composer and Jazz Historian, and notes "over 30 years to practicing, performing, and experimenting with the universal language of music," but I'm only seeing one previous album. This one is billed as "a musical autobiography," a live set most certainly, because that's where social music comes from. Special credit for the violin solos. A- [cd]

Coco Montoya: Writing on the Wall (2023, Alligator): Blues guitarist-singer-songwriter, from California, albums since 1995. Raw but unexceptional power. B [sp]

Kelly Moran: Moves in the Field (2024, Warp): Composer, usually filed as modern classical but started in a no-wave punk band, is filed in my database as electronica, but Wikipedia also mentions jazz, dream pop, and black metal. This is acoustic piano, solo, ten pieces, very nice. B+(***) [sp]

John Moreland: Visitor (2024, Thirty Tigers): Country singer-songwriter from Tulsa, debut 2008 but breakthrough was 2015's High on Tulsa Heat. Slows down here, and reflects. "We don't grieve, and we don't rest. We just choose the lie that feels the best." B+(***) [sp]

Simon Moullier: Inception (2022 [2023], Fresh Sound New Talent): Vibraphonist, from Nantes, France (although web bio doesn't mention that, or anything specific other than "being mentored" at Berklee), fourth album since 2020, trio with bass (Luca Alemanno) and drums (Jongkuk Kim), on one original and eight wide-ranging jazz standards (including a Jobim). B+(**) [sp]

David Murray Quartet: Francesca (2023 [2024], Intakt): Tenor sax great, includes a bit more than his usual bass clarinet special, other names on the cover: Marta Sanchez (piano), Luke Stewart (bass), Russell Carter (drums). Sounds great, if a bit more relaxed than usual. (Of course, no sooner than I write that line, he rips off a monstrous solo.) A- [sp]

Mute: After You've Gone (2021 [2024], Endectomorph Music): Quartet of Kevin Sun (C melody sax/clarinet/suona), Christian Li (piano), Jeonglim Yang (bass), Dayeon Seok (drums); second album, song credits scattered, including a standard for the title, a nice touch. B+(***) [cdr]

Nat Myers: Yellow Peril (2023, Easy Eye Sound): Roots-blues singer-songwriter-guitarist from Kentucky, happens to be Korean-American, an irony that is not lost on him. First album. Good songs throughout, but "Pray for Rain" is exceptional. A- [sp]

Bill Orcutt Guitar Quartet: Four Guitars Live (2023 [2024], Palilalia): Guitarist, from Florida, started in rock groups, notably one from 1992-96 he co-led with then-wife Adris Hoyos called Harry Pussy. He released a solo album in 1996, then many more after 2011, along with avant-jazz collaborations (especially with Chris Corsano). His largest project, Music for Four Guitars, appeared in 2022, with Wendy Eisenberg, Ava Mendoza, and Shane Parish. Here they take their 30:58 set on the road, stretching it to 58:14. A- [sp]

Parchman Prison Prayer: Some Mississippi Sunday Morning (2023, Glitterbeat): Gospel recordings from inmates in a maximum security prison in Mississippi. B+(**) [sp]

Ben Patterson Jazz Orchestra: Groove Junkies (2023 [2024], Origin): Conventional big band, leader/composer plays trombone, graduated from UNT, spent over a decade in the USAF Airmen of Note, has at least two previous albums as leader, his whole career leading right here. He has every reason to be pleased with this one, although I'm not fully convinced by the big Latin jazz number. B+(**) [cd]

Nicholas Payton: Drip (2023, PayTone): Trumpet player, from New Orleans, plays keyboard and flugelhorn here, fairly laid back funk tracks with guest vocals. B [sp]

Pierrick Pédron/Gonzalo Rubalcaba: Pedron Rubalcaba (2022 [2023], Gazebo): French alto saxophonist, dozen-plus albums since 2001, duets with the Cuban pianist, who started in the 1980 with Orquesta Aragón and has long been based in Florida. Nice mix and match here. B+(***) [sp]

Jeremy Pelt: Tomorrow's Another Day (2024, Highnote): Trumpet player, debut 2002, a regular on this label since 2010, mainstream player with considerable chops, calls this his "most experimental recording to-date." That involves electric as well as acoustic bass (Leighton McKinley Harrell) and keyboards (Frank LoCastro), with vibes (Jalen Baker) and drums (Allan Mednard or Deantoni Parks). B+(*) [sp]

People of Earth: People of Earth (2023, Truth Revolution Recording Collective): Latin jazz label in New York, has produced much of interest lately, but I'm not very clear on what's going on here: eleven musicians, three vocalists, none I recognize. Starts off very upbeat, then runs through a wide range of looks. B+(**) [sp]

Pet Shop Boys: Nonetheless (2024, Parlophone): Fifteenth studio album, since 1986. Formula by now, but it's a great formula, dancey and dreamy, clever and profound, their best in some time, most likely. A- [sp]

Jessica Pratt: Here in the Pitch (2024, Mexican Summer): Singer-songwriter from San Francisco, based in Los Angeles, fourth album since 2012, has a reputation but I disliked the only previous album I've heard. I don't dislike this rather low key "album of hypnogogic folk music," but didn't find the mysteries intriguing enough to give it a second listen either. B [sp]

John Primer & Bob Corritore: Crawlin' Kingsnake (2024, VizzTone): Mississippi bluesman, played with Magic Slim before going out on his own in 1991, picked up the harmonica player in 2013, and they've been solic ever since. B+(***) [sp]

Jeanfrançois Prins: Blue Note Mode (2024, GAM): Belgian guitarist, debut 1993 with Judy Niemack, "sharing his time between NYC and Berlin for over 20 years," moved back to Brussels in 2016. Sees this as a tribute marking the 85th anniversary of the Blue Note label, "the centennial of Rudy Van Gelder, and the 65th anniversary of his mythical studio." So he convened a hard bop revival -- Jeremy Pelt (trumpet), Jaleel Shaw (alto sax), Danny Grissett (piano), Jay Anderson (bass), and E.J. Strickland (drums) -- mediated with guitar. B+(**) [sp]

Katie Pruitt: Mantras (2024, Rounder): Singer-songwriter from Georgia, filed her first record under country but that's less obvious here. B+(**) [sp]

Tutu Puoane: Wrapped in Rhythm, Vol. 1 (2023 [2024], SoulFactory): South African singer-songwriter, based in Brussels, debut album 2007, lyrics taken from South African poet Lebo Mashile's anthology, In a Ribbon of Rhythm. Band is mostly Belgian, plus Larry Goldings (organ). B+(*) [sp]

Ren: Sick Boi (2023, The Other Songs): Welsh rapper/beatmaker Ren Gill, formerly of Trick the Fox and The Big Push, third album. Quick off the mark, but in for the long haul. A- [sp]

Xavier Richardeau: A Caribbean Thing (2023, Continuo Jazz): French baritone/soprano saxophonist, albums back to 1996, seventh per Discogs, joined here by Jocelyn Ménard (tenor sax) and a suitably evocative rhythm section. B+(*) [sp]

Jason Robinson: Ancestral Numbers (2023 [2024], Playscape): Saxophonist (tenor/soprano here, also alto flute), albums since 1998, composed everything here, thinking about his ancestors. Quintet with Michael Dessen (trombone), Joshua White (piano), Drew Gress (bass), and Ches Smith (drums). Interesting throughout, but took me a while to work through all of it. A- [cd]

Maggie Rogers: Don't Forget Me (2024, Capitol): Singer-songwriter, the kind I have trouble with because I don't like having to pay close attention, but the music and voice are agreeable enough to lessen the chore, and the work pays off more often than not. Third major label album, after two self-released efforts that her discography makes an effort to distance from (although they seem to be available in a juvenilia compilation). Probably worth revisiting the earlier work. A- [sp]

Rosali: Bite Down (2024, Merge): Singer-songwriter, last name Middleman, fourth album since 2016. B [sp]

Ann Savoy: Another Heart (2024, Smithsonian Folkways): Originally Ann Allen, from St. Louis, married Cajun accordionist Marc Savoy and joined his Savoy Doucet Cajun Band, also appearing in Magnolia Sisters, and leading a couple albums with Her Sleepless Knights. This seems to be the first with just her name on the credit line. It is a modest endeavor. B+(*) [sp]

Serengeti: KDIV (2024, Othar): Chicago rapper David Cohn, many records since 2003, looks like he's released several since the last I noticed in 2021. KD is his recurring character (or alter-ego?) Kenny Davis (this 18-track album is also available on Bandcamp as Kenny Davis IV). A- [sp]

Wadada Leo Smith & Amina Claudine Myers: Central Park's Mosaics of Reservoir, Lake, Paths and Gardens (2021 [2024], Red Hook): Trumpet and piano duo. Pretty slow. B+(*) [sp]

Sprints: Letter to Self (2024, City Slang): Irish garage punk band, singer-guitarist Karla Chubb, has a couple EPs before this debut album. Substantial songs, has the sound down perfect. A- [sp]

St. Vincent: All Born Screaming (2024, Virgin): Singer-songwriter Anne Clark, born in Tulsa, grew up in Dallas, studied at Berklee, seventh studio album since 2007. B+(**) [sp]

Luke Stewart Silt Trio: Unknown Rivers (2022-23 [2024], Pi): Bassist, works in a number of DC-based groups, most notably Irreversible Entanglements. Second Silt Trio album, with Brian Settles (tenor sax) and either Trae Crudup or Chad Taylor on drums (second half here is a live set with Taylor). A- [cd]

Still House Plants: If I Don't Make It, I Love U (2023 [2024], Bison): British art/experimental rock trio, singer is Jess Hickie-Kallenbach, third or fourth album, has very positive reviews from Guardian and Pitchfork, but not much notice elsewhere. I could see her as some kind of jazz singer, only loosely tethered to the off-kilter guitar/drums, but not the kind -- pace "remarkable voice" -- I like. B- [sp]

Taylor Swift: The Tortured Poets Department (2024, Republic): Tenth studio album, not counting the redundant rerecordings, this one coming on the heels of one of the highest grossing tours ever. Not a lot of glitz here, which must mean she's focused on the songwriting. I'm not quick enough on words to qualify that, but I really like the tone and pacing, and don't note anything amiss. Note that I only listened to the basic album, not the extra disc (The Anthology). A- [sp]

Natsuki Tamura/Jim Black: NatJim (2023 [2024], Libra): Japanese trumpet player, husband to pianist Satoko Fujii, has more albums with her but quite a few on his own, like this dynamic but choppy improv duo with drums. B+(***) [cd]

Ralph Towner: At First Light (2022 [2023], ECM): American guitarist, has recorded regularly for ECM since 1973, also extensively in the group Oregon. Solo here, nice and easy. B+(*) [sp]

Rosie Tucker: Utopia Now! (2024, Sentimental): Singer-songwriter from Los Angeles, fifth album since 2015, alt-rock guitar with some hook craft. B+(**) [sp]

Angela Verbrugge: Somewhere (2017-18 [2024], OA2): Standards singer, from Canada, first album, starts a bit flat, and the title song has little to recommend itself, but gets better -- I especially love the one en français, curiously the only one she wrote, and oddly billed as a "remix." B+(**) [cd]

Bill Warfield and the Hell's Kitchen Funk Orchestra: Time Capsule (2023, Planet Arts): Trumpet player, has led big bands since 1990, this his second album with this particular group. Opens with a splashy Chrissi Poland vocal. Only a few more vocals, but everything is splashy. B+(**) [sp]

Randy Weinstein: Harmonimonk (2023 [2024], Random Chance): Harmonica player (both chromatic and diatonic) plays seven Monk tunes, 37:46, with various backing, but not much on any given song. B+(**) [cd]

Aaron West and the Roaring Twenties: In Lieu of Flowers (2024, Hopeless): Solo project by Wonder Years frontman Dan Campbell, third album since 2014. Has a fairly quiet folksinger phase, which rather often swells to power ballad and beyond -- a trick I quickly tire of. Sample lyric: "if there's a way of fucking up, I'm going to find it." B- [sp]

Conchúr White: Swirling Violets (2024, Bella Union): Singer-songwriter from Northern Ireland, second album. He has all of the songcraft and much of the sensibility of the singer-songwriters known as Withered Hand and Bon Iver and several more that have already slipped my mind. Probably has the same appeal, not that I care that much for any of them. B+(***) [sp]

Kathryn Williams & Withered Hand: Willson Williams (2024, One Little Independent): UK singer-songwriters, latter's real name is Dan Willson, has a few albums since 2009, Williams' longer discography goes back to 1999. I've never run across her before, but he has a reputation as a skilled songwriter with religious airs. This seems nice enough. B+(*) [sp]

Dan Wilson: Things Eternal (2023, Brother Mister/Mack Avenue): Guitarist, second album, leads a quartet with electric piano (Glenn Zaleski), bass (Brandon Rose), and drums (David Throckmorton), with guest organ on two tracks, vocals on three -- a crossover pop move that works better than expected. B+(**) [sp]

Mark Winkler: The Rules Don't Apply (2024, Cafe Pacific): Jazz singer, twenty-some albums since 1980 including duos with Cheryl Bentyne, yet when you look him up in Wikipedia you get some South African writer. Looks for postmodern standards -- "I.G.Y." sounds especially great here, and he does well by "Got to Get You Into My Life" and "Mama Told Me Not to Come" -- and writes some lyrics, mostly celebrating jazz. Recorded in five groups, but dates not given. B+(**) [cd]

Warren Wolf: Chano Pozo: Origins (2023, self-released): Vibraphonist, from Baltimore, tenth album since 2005, including a decade on Mack Avenue (also playing with Christian McBride). Very little info on this, but back story seems to be that it's a tribute to his late father, who nicknamed his son after the legendary Cuban percussionist. B+(*) [sp]

Chelsea Wolfe: She Reaches Out to She Reaches Out to She (2024, Loma Vista): Singer-songwriter from California, seventh studio album since 2010, blends folk, gothic and metal, I guess into "darkwave." This is dark indeed, dense, but not unpleasing. What it all means is beyond me. B+(**) [sp]

Xaviersobased: Keep It Goin Xav (2024, 34Ent): Young (20) rapper Xavier Lopez, from NYC, first album. B+(*) [sp]

Christopher Zuar Orchestra: Exuberance (2021 [2024], self-released): Second album, 22-piece orchestra. Nominally a love story, with the final song featuring lyrics by Zuar's wife Anne, sung by Emma Frank. B+(**) [cd]

Recent Reissues, Compilations, Vault Discoveries

Cannonball Adderley Quintet: Berliner Jazztage, November 2nd 72 (1972 [2023], Lantower): Alto saxophonist (1928-75), an exceptionally popular hard bop star. I recommend his early Emarcy sets (1956-58, collected as Sophisticated Swing) and Somethin' Else (1958, on Blue Note, with Miles Davis), but I have nothing in my database after his 1958-63 series with Riverside ended, but he recorded more for Capitol through 1972 and Fantasy up to his early death. Like most of his records, this features his brother Nat on trumpet -- a giant in his own right, and a more prolific composer. Also George Duke (keyboards, wrote the 19:06 opener, "Black Messiah"), Walter Booker (bass), and Roy McCurdy (drums). B+(**) [sp]

Afrika Muye Muye! Tanzanian Rumba & Muziki Wa Dansi 1968-1970 (1968-70 [2023], Recordiana): South African reprint label, ventures into Tanzania for a narrowly sourced but quite pleasant "dance music" (to translate the Swahili) collection: six groups, 17 songs (5 by Nuta Jazz). B+(***) [bc]

Terri Lyne Carrington: TLC & Friends (1981 [2023], Candid): Drummer, from Massachusetts, father and grandfather were musicians (latter played with Fats Waller and Chu Berry), was tutored by Alan Dawson, recorded this when she was 16 but had some major league friends: George Coleman (tenor sax), Kenny Barron (piano), Buster Williams (bass). She wrote one song, but otherwise went with sure covers, slipping Billy Joel between two Sonny Rollins tunes on the second side, "St. Thomas" and "Sonny Moon for Two" (with her father guesting as the second tenor sax). They're all having terrific fun. A- [sp]

Congo Funk: Sound Madness From the Shores of the Mighty Congo River: Kinshasa/Brazzaville 1969-1982 (1969-82 [2024], Analog Africa): Some big names here, like Franco and Rochereau, as well a sampling from the north bank of the river, selected to emphasize the influence of James Brown. B+(***) [sp]

Grupo Irakere: Grupo Irakere (1976 [2024], Mr Bongo): Legendary Cuban jazz group, founded by pianist Chucho Valdés in 1973, second album, band toured Eastern Europe in 1977, and gained further international notice when Columbia released an album in 1978, followed by notable defections in 1980-81 (Paquito D'Rivera, Arturo Sandoval). The band continued through 1997, when Valdés left, to be replaced by his son, Chuchito (to 1999). Excitement everywhere. A- [sp]

Jimi Hendrix Experience: Hollywood Bowl, August 18, 1967 (1967, Experience Hendrix/Legacy): Another installment, we're long past surprises now, let alone amazement, but the quirks are still fun to listen to. Set list: "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Band" to open, two blues, four originals, "Like a Rolling Stone," and "Wild Thing" to finish. B+(**) [sp]

Keith Jarrett: Solo-Concerts Bremen/Lausanne (1973 [2023], ECM, 2CD): Originally a daunting 3-LP box, but this did much to establish Jarrett's reputation as a dazzling pianist before his 1975 solo The Köln Concert became a mega-seller. As with the latter, the CD length got dispensed of the need to slice his long solos up, here giving us the two-part Bremen in 63:10 and the single Lausanne set in 64:53. B+(***) [sp]

Les Belgicains: Na Tango Ya Covadia 1964-70 (1964-70 [2024], Covadia): Covadia was a Belgian label founded by Nikiforos Cavvadias, a Greek who had produced records in Congo for the Ngoma label. In Belgium, he organized groups of Congolese students, releasing singles, a selection of which are featured in this revived label sampler. B+(**) [bc]

A Moi La Liberté: Early Electronic Raï, Algerie 1983-90 (1983-90 [2023], Serendip Lab): Algerian folk music, electrified during the 1980s, spreading from Oran to Paris, accelerated by the civil war (1991-2002), during which several singers became international stars. For me, the introduction was Earthworks 1988 sampler, Rai Rebels, followed by individual albums by Cheb Khaled, Chaba Fadela, and others. This goes a bit earlier, perhaps a bit deeper. B+(***) [bc]

Wes Montgomery: The Complete Full House Sessions (1962 [2023], Craft, 2CD): Hugely influential jazz guitarist, cut this album live at Tsubo in Berkeley, California, released in 1962 with six songs, 43:14, with one of his strongest groups: Johnny Griffin (tenor sax), Wynton Kelly (piano), Paul Chambers (bass), and Jimmy Cobb (drums). The 1987 CD picked up three alternate takes, and a 2007 reissue found a few more. This adds a couple more, giving us 14 takes of the original six songs. B+(***) [sp]

Todd Snider: Songs for the Daily Planet (Purple Version) (2020 [2024], Aimless): Pandemic project, possibly inspired by Taylor Swift's decision to re-record all of her old records, except that not being Taylor Swift, he decided to give them away as free downloads, and saved some money by just doing acoustic guitar solo versions, but they come out longer as he tells stories and talks around. The cover has some extra print: "Aimless Records Presents" above the cover image, and "Recorded at the Purple Building" below, but I think (Purple Version) suffices. This was his first album, from 1994. B+(**) [sp]

Todd Snider: Step Right Up (Purple Version) (2020 [2024], Aimless): Reminiscing his way through a remake of his second album. B+(**) [sp]

Todd Snider: Viva Satellite (Purple Version) (2020 [2024], Aimless): Project continues through his third and final MCA album, Viva Satellite. Solo guitar and voice, with spoken intros stretching the original 14 songs out to 84 minutes. B+(*) [sp]

Tell Everybody! 21st Century Juke Joint Blues From Easy Eye Sound (2017-23 [2023], Easy Eye Sound): Blues label sampler, label founded by Dan Auerbach (Black Keys) in Nashville, major find to date has been Robert Finley, with most of the artists here not even represented by albums (as far as I can tell; dating previously released songs is also hard, but I did find a couple). B+(**) [sp]

Old Music

Carmen Bradford: Home With You (2004, Azica): Jazz singer, daughter of trumpet player Bobby Bradford, her grandfather, Melvin Moore, sang with big bands and the Ink Spots in the 1940s. She has a half-dozen albums since 1992, following side credits with Count Basie and Benny Carter, but I didn't really notice her until the Jazz at the Ballroom album. This is the only album of hers I could stream. She's accompanied here by pianist Shelly Berg. Remarkable voice, a bit strained here, and not really the ideal set of songs and support (though this does have its moments) -- but I'd like to hear more. B+(**) [sp]

Dicks: These People/Peace? (1984-85 [2012], Alternative Tentacles): Austin-based punk band, recorded two albums 1983-85, plus some singles and EPs -- this tacks a three-track EP from 1984 onto their second album. I decided to check this out after leader Gary Floyd's death -- superb jazz critic Tim Niland named their first album, Kill From the Heart (1983), as an all-time favorite, but I already had it at B+(***). Choice cut is from the EP: "No Fuckin' War." B+(***) [sp]

Dicks: 1980-1986 (1980-86 [2010], Alternative Tentacles): Career-spanning compilation, starts with their first single ("Dicks Hate the Police"), samples their two albums (5 and 6 tracks), their 1984 EP ("No Fuckin' War" and "I Hope You Get Drafted"), plus some previously unreleased tracks. Total: 21 songs, 51:23, which can get a bit excessive. B+(**) [sp]

Nicole Glover & Nic Cacioppo: Literature (2020, self-released?): Tenor sax and drums duo, 14 pieces in 30:32, not her first album (that was 2015, titled First Record), also not in any discography I can find (but does appear on a couple of streaming sites), so I'm guessing here. What I do know is that she grew up in Portland; studied at William Patterson in NJ; "is on the faculty at Manhattan School of Music, Princeton University, and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music"; plays in Christian McBride's quintet and in "supergroup" Artemis; has two later albums on Savant; and gets confused by Google with "a writer of historical fantasy and other speculative fiction" -- presumably a different Nicole Glover. This is considerably more free than her résumé suggests, but she clearly has the talent to go anywhere she wants. B+(***) [sp]

Nicole Glover: Strange Lands (2020 [2021], Savant): Tenor sax trio, with Daniel Duke (bass) and Nic Cacioppo (drums), plus "special guest" George Cables (piano) on four tracks (on one of those, the bass and drums drop out). Mostly a solid mainstream outing, but gets exciting for a couple stretches where they break free. B+(***) [sp]

Jacques Greene: ANTH01 (2010-13 [2021], LuckyMe): Electronics producer Philippe Aubin-Dionne, from Montreal, alias from a street crossing (like Sleater-Kinney), compilation mostly from 2010-13 singles but I haven't been able to date the end points. B+(***) [sp]

Grand Kallé & African Jazz: Joseph Kabaselle and the Creation of Surboum African Jazz (1960-1963) (1960-63 [2021], Planet Ilunga): Congolese bandleader Kabaselle, aka Grand Kallé, led one of the first major soukous bands, its ranks including Dr. Nico, Rochereau, and Manu Dibango -- the latter evidently featured here. Surboum African Jazz was a label which released these singles and compiled them into albums in the 1970s. I'm not sure how these intersect with the later Sonodisc compilations, or the 2-CD Sterns set from 2013, Le Grand Kallé: His Life, His Music, which most likely is still the one to look for. B+(***) [bc]

Jimmy "Duck" Holmes: Cypress Grove (2019, Easy Eye Sound): 72-year-old blues singer-guitarist from Bentonia, Mississippi, inherited the Blue Front Cafe ("on the Mississippi Blues Trail") from his parents, but only started recording in 2006. Wrote three (of eleven) songs here, his favorite cover source Skip James. B+(***) [sp]

Jackson Blues, 1928-1938 (1928-38 [1991], Yazoo): Original LP collected 14 tracks from 10 artists in 1968, the dupes three tracks each for Tommy Johnson and Ishman Bracey. B+(**) [sp]

Rickie Lee Jones: Rickie Lee Jones (1979, Warner Bros.): Singer-songwriter, first album, led off with a memorable jive single, "Chuck E's in Love," which took the album platinum, and finished in top 25 in Pazz & Jop that year -- I was reminded of this, because it's the only one of the top-40 I missed hearing. She's had a steady career ever since, but her sales declined, with nothing after album four (1989) charting top-100. B+(*) [sp]

Rickie Lee Jones: Pirates (1981, Warner Bros.): Second album, also went top-ten but the singles stiffed. She does manage to generate some swing on the title cut, but the credits she should have gotten more (rhythm from Victor Feldman, Russell Ferrante, Chuck Rainey, Steve Gadd; horn spots from Randy Brecker, David Sanborn, and Tom Scott; Donald Fagen on synth). B [sp]

Ville Lähteenmäki Trio: Introducing (2022, Ultraääni): Leader plays bass clarinet, claims the compositions, titled "side A" and "side B," with Nicolas Leirtrø (contrabass) and Trym Saugstad Karlsen (drums). B+(***) [bc]

Ville Lähteenmäki Utopia: Russian Body Language (2020, Art First): Also found this earlier album, probably the bass clarinetist's first, a cassette release recorded and mixed by guitarist Lauri Kallio, with bass, drums, vibes (Mikko Antila), and extra alto sax on one track (Johannes Sarjasto). Most free, some heavy, some light. B+(***) [sp]

Li'l Andy & Karaoke Cowboy: Home in Landfill Acres (2008, self-released): Montreal country singer-songwriter Andrew McClellan, first album, set in a (probably fictitious) town "where the straightened street meets the knotted pine." Not just trad, with pedal steel and such, but almost old-timey. B+(**) [sp]

Li'l Andy: All Who Thirst Come to the Waters (2010, self-released): Second album, still country but ventures into gospel in a dark vein. B+(*) [sp]

Li'l Andy: While the Engines Burn (2014, self-released): Third album, sounds less country but the concepts are rustic, one song dated 1917, another "Fin De Siècle," with several referencing trains and the cover picturing a smoke-belching, steam-driven tractor -- a massive engine with wheels. As a songwriter, he's starting to remind me of Sufjan Stevens, but not yet in a good way. B [sp]

Li'l Andy: All the Love Songs Lied to Us (2019, self-released): The country touches help, although it's all rather subtle, and seriously historical. B+(**) [sp]

Mississippi Moaners: 1927-1942 (1927-42 [1991], Yazoo): Isaiah Nettles, of Carlisle, Mississippi, recorded four songs in 1935, two released as The Mississippi Moaner, one here along with 13 more songs, one per artist, in this interesting compilation of Delta blues obscurities. B+(**) [sp]

Mike Monford: Perseverance (2012, self-released): Alto saxophonist from Detroit, first album although he must have some history to get to that title, not much to go on but Herb Boyd's liner notes, which identify Marc Cary (piano/organ), Tarus Mateen (bass), Steve Williams (drums), and Rayse Biggs (trumpet). Solid groove, with spiritual jazz flashes. B+(**) [sp]

The Rough Guide to Delta Blues [Reborn and Remastered] (1928-40 [2016], World Music Network): Generous (25-track) sampler from the northwest corner of Mississippi, noting legends like Son House, Charley Patton, and Skip James, but quickly moving on to the lesser-knowns that make anthologies like this necessary. Starts with the last-recorded piece, Bukka White's "Special Streamline," because even archivalists like to open with a bang. A- [sp]

The Rough Guide to Delta Blues (Vol. 2) (1928-40 [2022], World Music Network): Plenty more where the previous volume came from, giving 22 first-volume artists a second song (opening again with 1940 Bukka White), adding four more (Big Joe Williams, Mississippi Matilda, Louise Johnson, Mississippi Mud Steppers). Some finds here, like "It's Killin' Me" (Willie Lofton), but overall it loses a step. B+(***) [sp]

The Rough Guide to Ragtime Blues [Reborn and Remastered] (1925-38 [2017], World Music Network): Blind Blake, Blind Boy Fuller, and Blind Willie McTell anchor this collection, where "rag" can mean any number of things. B+(***) [sp]

The Rough Guide to Barrelhouse Blues [Reborn and Remastered] (1928-48 [2018], World Music Network): Piano players, a nice selection, with boogie woogie specials like Jimmy Yancey, Pete Johnson, and Albert Ammons pushing into the 1940s. B+(***) [sp]

Serengeti: The Glennon EP (2020, self-released, EP): With nothing in my database since the disappointing 2021 Have a Summer, I'm playing catch up. Five tracks here, 11:46, produced by Glennon Curran. Still, not much here. B- [sp]

Serengeti: Kaleidoscope III (2022, Audio Recon, EP): Nine tracks, 16:01, produced by Rob Kleiner. [PS: Previously reviewed here for B+(**), possibly from a shorter version.] B [sp]

Serengeti: We Saw Mad Turtles (2022, self-released, EP): Four tracks, 10:12, produced by Arborist. Getting a bit denser. B [sp]

Serengeti: Ajai II (2023, self-released): Short album (10 tracks, 28:37), follows his 2020 release Ajai, produced by Child Actor. B+(*) [sp]

Todd Snider: Step Right Up (1996, MCA): Second album, following his 1994 debut Songs for the Daily Planet, some folk, some country, some flat out rock, can amuse but that's not yet a big part of his repertoire. At least until "Tension" appears, one of his greatest songs (I probably know it from one of the Storyteller live albums). That's where he's found his calling. B+(***) [sp]

Todd Snider: Viva Satellite (1998, MCA): Third album, last for MCA, reportedly got him fired, probably for following their advice and rocking harder -- not something I object to on any sort of principle, but I find the deviant "Guaranteed" much more interesting than the powerhouse "Out All Night". Still, I can't say that his unplugged remake is any better, so maybe not one of his better batches of songs (although "Double Wide Blues" is a keeper). B+(**) [sp]

Todd Snider: Happy to Be Here (2000, Oh Boy): After MCA, Snider landed on John Prine's Oh Boy label. First (well, only) time I heard him was as a solo act opening for Prine, but that was around the time of his third Oh Boy album, Live: Near Truths and Hotel Rooms, so I'm catching up with its predecessors. This was recorded solo, then extra bits were dubbed in (including some awkward horns). B+(***) [sp]

Todd Snider: New Connection (2002, Oh Boy): Some more songs I recognize, like "Statistician's Blues" and "Beer Run," no doubt from elsewhere. B+(**) [sp]

Music Weeks

Music: Current count 36534 [36534] rated (+0), 149 [149] unrated (+0).

Excerpts from this month's Music Week posts:


Sources noted as follows:

  • [cd] based on physical cd
  • [cdr] based on an advance or promo cd or cdr
  • [bc] available at
  • [sp] available at
  • [yt] available at

Grades are probably self-explanatory, aside from B+, which is subdivided 1-2-3 stars, because most records that come my way are pretty good, but they're not all that good.