Stanley Brinks is joined by The Wave Pictures for their third album together; their first since 2010’s ‘Another One Just Like That’. Recorded entirely live in the studio, without headphones or overdubs, and with a good deal of improvisation, ‘Gin’ is a modern-sounding, in a way avant-garde, old school recording of text-driven songs. The Wave Pictures didn't get a chance to learn the songs before the session, Stan having forgotten to put a stamp on the demo tape he'd sent them from Berlin.
Some things just get better with time. Red wine and self-confidence, for instance, or Matt Bianco. The legendary British group, named after an imaginary Sixties superspy in the Eighties, is adored around the world for hits like "Half A Minute", "Get Out Of Your Lazy Bed", "Whose Side Are You On?", or "Yeh Yeh". For their fifteenth album "Gravity", front-man, vocalist and songwriter Mark Reilly recruited a superb new band featuring Swedish sax- and flute-star Magnus Lindgren and a large chunk of Jamie Cullum's group. Their mission: reviving and modernizing Matt Bianco's Bossa- and Jazz-roots, while keeping the easy going swing of former successes, built around the singularly recognizable Dry-Martini-voice of Mark Reilly. The result is an energetic, yet relaxed collection of ten original songs, with enough gravity to please their most sophisticated admirers and plenty of new fans, who might have been bitten by the Jazz-bug via a Gregory Porter or Jamie Cullum.
A Pouting Grimace is the audacious new release from pianist/composer Matt Mitchell, whose prior release Vista Accumulation (Pi 2015) The New York Times calls “a bold signature” that “simmers with deep intensity.” Not only is he one of the most in-demand pianists in jazz – Mitchell plays in bands such as Tim Berne’s Snakeoil, Steve Coleman’s Natal Eclipse, the Dave Douglas Quintet, John Hollenbeck’s Large Ensemble, Jonathan Finlayson’s Sicilian Defense, Rudresh Mahanthappa’s Birdcalls, and David Binney’s Quartet — he has established himself as a composer of bold distinction. Substantial in scope, the album, which features twelve musicians: five woodwinds, four percussionists, harp, bass, and the leader on piano, Prophet 6, and electronics, weaves an intricate web of off-kilter rhythms and logical frenzy. Produced by the acclaimed guitarist/composer David Torn, the work is completely beyond genre, a daring tour de force that headily mines the interstice between precision-plotted compositions and the thrill of improvisation.