Transatlantic, by Chris Potter and the DR Big Band. Dense, thoughtful arrangements of Potter’s compositions fuel inspired his soloing on this album of propulsive original tracks.
Rayuela, by Miguel Zenon and Laurent Coq. Intriguing concept album inspired by Julio Cortazar’s postmodernist (and jazz-infused) novel Rayuela (Hopscotch). One of the rare jazz-literature fusions that really works.
Be Good, by Gregory Porter. Rising star Porter not only sings with passion; his thoughtful original songs beautifully bridge the gap between jazz and R & B. “Painted on Canvas” is an instant classic.
Samdhi, by Rudresh Mahanthappa. True fusion music that furthers this dynamic alto player’s experiments in melding jazz and South Asian styles.
Evensong, by Steve Slagle. Slagle’s sinewy alto lines and striking compositions highlight this superior post-bop set.
March Sublime, by Alan Ferber. Contemporary big band music the combines swing era textures with post-bop styles and soloing. Scintillating!