Various Artists – Wearing of the Green

The Sound Of Shellac is a record label out of Norway which refurbishes old 78rpm discs, brightens their sound and releases these tracks into well-curated compilations.  What’s more, they’re offered as pay-as-you-like releases, so purchasing these comps helps show support for such a fine label. This particular disc features artists John McCormack, Paul Robeson and …

Yggdrasil & Vera Kondratieva — Timint Areh

Yggdrasil are a Faroese project led by multi-instrumentalist Kristian Blak (whom I had the pleasure, many years ago, of meeting in Varna, Bulgaria) and a host of local musicians along with singer Vera Kondratieva from Siberia.  You would expect to hear a melding of Scandinavian and traditional Siberian music on Timent Areh, but this also …

Gleb Kolyadin – The Outland

Gleb Kolyadin is the pianist of Russian progressive rock band iamthemorning, but in this release, he has no problem mixing prog rock with jazz fusion.  The album is full of guests, but perhaps the biggest one is King Crimson’s legendary bassist and Chapman stick player Tony Levin playing upright bass.  Solid.

EABS – Slavic Spirits

I am floored at how consistently good Polish jazz is, and though I find the idea of dabbling in demonology somewhere between hokey and morally bankrupt, what matters for people who read this blog is consistency in great music. From EABS’ Bandcamp site: “The idea for “The Darkness”, the composition opening the Slavic Spirits LP, …

Mikael Tariverdiev – Visions in Black & White

Mikael Tariverdiev was a Russian cinema and TV composer of Armenian extraction but raised Tbilisi, Georgia, a true man of the Soviet world.  Though he was quoted as not particularly liking jazz, he was as good an improviser that Russia ever produced. From the release’s Bandcamp page: “Visions in Black and White is a collection of …

Duke Ellington – Such Sweet Thunder

Duke Ellington’s Shakespearian masterpiece, Such Sweet Thunder, is the first album I bought for its typography alone.  I had heard older releases by him, had classic discs like Money Jungle, but this album caught my eye because I had had a deep interest in typography around 1994-1995.  The text on the right was so crisp …

L’Orage – Triangle

L’Orange are a band led by the drummer Nelson Schaer, and they produce a sumptuous jazz that is a heady mix of acid and downtempo.  It’s relaxing, but intriguing, listening.

Maha – Orkos

The legendary Habibi Funk will be releasing another scorching release on October 10, 2022.  The release will feature a singer called Maha, who hails from Egypt and who worked with Salah Ragab’s Cairo Jazz Band as their main vocalist.  There is an amazing backstory you can find on the release’s Bandcamp site, but the most …