With so much good music coming through thick and fast, it’s easy for albums to drop online and go overlooked. Check out our weekly mini-guide to the best new records you may have missed. Happy listening – and don’t forget to hit the links and support the artists.
Chip Wickham – Blue To Red
Flautist/saxophonist Chip Wickham wants to release five albums in five years. With Blue To Red, his third full length in four years there’s certainly no let-up in the quality which remains very high!. The six-song collection “not only seeks to forewarn Earth’s possible Mars-like future but seeks to tap into the interplanetary, cosmic nature of music.” Citing influences including Alice Coltrane and Yusef Lateef, it finds Wickham effortlessly traversing hip-hop, electronic and club music. With several other musicians lending their considerable talents to the project, including Jon Scott (drums), Simon’ Sneaky’ Houghton (double bass/cello), Dan’ JD 73’ Goldman (keys) and Amanda Whiting (harp) this is easily his best work to date.
Teeth Agency – Piano Man Breed Love
Fresh from their outing on Nyege Nyege Tapes as Metal Preyers messers Hackett and Chavez return as Teeth Agency. On Piano Man Breed Love the pair create all sorts of unexpected sonic adventures which the Stones Throw describe as “Lizard lounge jazz and French noir sleaze with sinking ship piano improvisations in underwater organ suits”. Listening to the LP and that description is certainly fitting, with an array of smoky, meditative mid and downtempo numbers that slowly move with late-night abandon. One of my favourite hidden gems of the year, a few notable tunes you should check include the title track, ‘Gorgon Organ’, ‘No Laughing No Crying’, ‘You Don’t Know What Love Is’ and ‘Fidel’s Last Drag’. Without further ado, hit play and while you’re at it, explore the duo’s Metal Prayers project.
Ari-Jovan – Muse.Views.Hues: The Beginning of an End
Sublime new instrumental album from Detroit-based alter-ego group Ari-Jovan started by producer and Dj “ME” (Donavan Glover). The band consist of ME., drummer/producer Wayne “Juuni” Ramocan, and funk guitarist/ vocalist Jason Rickett with contributions from violinist/vocalist Mara Virtuous, and songwriter/MC McCrea Deezer. MVH is an audio-visual treat with each of the twelve tracks accompanied by a video. The album is soundtracked by live strings, classical piano chords, hip hop drums, interview clips from Bob Marley, Bruce Lee, Eartha Kitt and Jean Michel Basquiat and much more. It’s an intriguing listen that weaves a story of someone embarking on a mental/spiritual journey of recalibration through the ill will of life: frustrations, setbacks, heartbreak and world propaganda. Press play, take your time and absorb this superb release.
Tenderlonious – The Piccolo – TENDER plays TUBBY
22a founder, producer and multi-instrumentalist, Ed ‘Tenderlonious’ Cawthorne heads up this incredibly special release for Jazz Detective Records, paying homage to the British Jazz legend Tubby Hayes. A chance sequence of events led to Tenderlonious getting his hands on Tubby Hayes’ piccolo, resulting in this outstanding re-interpretation of four classic Tubby Hayes track. Check the superb ‘Down In The Village’ where they pay due respect to the brilliant original, while the bustling jazz of ‘Raga’ is a wonder to the ears. A perfect collection but that’s what we’d expect from the ever-brilliant musician.
Tenderlonious – Tender In Lahore
Yep, the prolific Tenderlonious comes through with another amazing project. ‘Tender In Lahore’ features three improvised ragas with Tenderlonious on flute/soprano sax and Marek Pędziwiatr on synth, alongside Jaubi members Kashif Ali Dhani on tabla/vocals and Zohaib Hassan Khan on sarangi. The project serves as just a small taster for the recording sessions during Tenderlonious’ time in Lahore. The fruits of these sessions we’ll hear on a new Jaubi album entitled ‘Nafs At Peace’, which is set for release on Astigmatic Records later this year. Three gorgeous compositions where Eastern mysticism meets spontaneity and free improvisation. Put it this way, if you like your jazz on the experimental side and mixed with exotic Indian classical music, then this is for you.
Alejandro Mosso – Other Worlds
If you haven’t yet dived into the immersive Fourth World journey of Berlin-based producer Alejandro Mosso new Other Worlds EP from earlier last month, then it’s time you do. Two years in the making and using the latest technologies in 3D binaural audio, the new EP features four meditative zone-outs that blend electronic and acoustic instruments. If you require some peace and tranquillity, then Other Worlds will do nicely. We’re simply in awe – plug in the headphones and hear for yourself.