Thursday, May 18, 2006

What These Ears Have Been Diggin' Lately

I have a new set of Mackie speakers at the office so there's been plenty of incentive to drink in great music. Here's a few stand outs from the HurdAudio rotation:

Matthew Shipp Trio: Prism
luxuriously long improvisations with a hot piano trio. The intensity and focus of these two live, half-hour doses is incredible.

Michael Vlatkovich/William Roper: Chobraty
The intricacies, compositional details and outstanding improvisations make this one a quiet marvel. Michael Vlatkovich has made a substantial contribution to the genre of duets for trombone and tuba. These are substantive, heady compositions played with loose energy and human warmth.

Dave Douglas Quintet: Meaning and Mystery
This one takes a stronger hold with each listening. Especially tracks like "Culture Wars" and "Blues to Steve Lacy." It's amazing how much the addition of Donny McCaslin changes the sound of this group. He's a force on the sax to watch out for. (Which is not a knock on Chris Potter, who was outstanding on this group's previous releases (The Infinite, and Strange Liberation).)

Wayne Peet Quartet: Live at Al's Bar
This one treads a perfect balance between heady free improvisation and a good solid groove. Long, continuous multi-movement works unfold with tasty ripples from Nels Cline on the left channel and G.E. Stinson on the right before "Inner Funkdom" delivers a solid kick from this Hammond organ quartet.

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