OA2 Records Reviews

The Taylor / Fidyk Big Band - Live At Blues Alley
by Jack Bowers, Cadence, Oct-Dec 2007

The second album by the superb Mark Taylor / Steve Fidyk Big Band was taped November 2, '06, at Blues Alley in Washington, D.C., and it lays bare a sizable chunk of the band's remarkable power and finesse. Much of the muscle is provided by drummer Fidyk, working in concert with the other sections, the finesse by composer/arranger Taylor who wrote three of the album's eleven selections, co-wrote "Brush Taps" with Louie Bellson, and arranged... read more

Debbie Poryes | Bruce Williamson - Two and Fro
by Larry Hollis, Cadence

Another meeting of two souls is chronicled in 'Two & Fro'. A sort of West Coast (CA) meets East Coast (NY) with pianist Debbie Poryes and master-reedman Bruce Williamson putting their heads together on a mix of evergreens, a pair of Jazz staples and an original each. Like Dorothy Leigh and Alva Nelson, these two are no strangers to one another. Williamson was present on Poryes' last release for Origin, 'Catch Your Breath' a quartet date which... read more

Jay Lawrence - Thermal Strut
by Tom Morgan, Percussive Notes

Anyone who loves jazz piano trio in the tradition of Oscar Peterson, Ahmad Jamal or the Jeff Hamilton Trio will enjoy this wonderful jazz CD from drummer Jay Lawrence, a veteran of Nevada showrooms who has worked with everyone from Sammy Davis Jr. to Roy Clark and whose jazz credits include Phil Woods, Clark Terry, Bob Mintzer and Hank Jones. The other members of the trio are pianist Tamir Hendelman and bassist Lynn Seaton.

From the first... read more

Glenn White - Sacred Machines
by Adam Greenberg, All Music Guide

For his sophomore effort (his first on a label), New York saxophonist Glenn White has brought together a wide range of influences and stylistic elements, combining it all into one surprisingly coherent work. The album opens with the title track, a dense piece that takes some cues from Coltrane's "Giant Steps" motifs, particularly in the piano comping, excellently provided by Roberta Piket. The album takes a good turn toward the urban with pieces... read more

Chamber 3 - Grassroots
by Dan McClenaghan, All About Jazz

4 1/2 STARS Do different geographies create different sounds? New York-hard and brassy, in your face and boppish; the Nordic countries - cool and reflective, spacious and dreamy; the American Midwest, Chicago and Detroit -- soulful and hip with a hard urban edge. This is, of course, a simplification, with exceptions flying all over the place, but distinct similarities in sounds can be found in various locales, owed probably more to... read more

New Standard Jazz Orchestra - Waltz About Nothing
by Hrayr Attarian, Chicago Jazz Magazine

The creative, 16-piece New Standard Jazz Orchestra (NSJO) is a cohesive ensemble made up of some of the most brilliant musicians in Chicago. Under the co-direction of trombonist Andy Baker and saxophonist Ken Partyka, there is a sophisticated style and a cinematic sound, both of which are well represented on the debut release, Waltz About Nothing.

Altoist Chris Madsen's "Spring and Fall" has a feel of a film soundtrack. Horns and woodwinds... read more

Paul Tynan & Aaron Lington - Bicoastal Collective: Chapter Three
by Jim Dupuis, !Earshot (Canada)

TOP TEN RECORDS OF 2014 Combine a hot trumpet, with a groovy organ, a racing bass and the bari sax and you get a fun CD with plenty of bop and blues. Trumpeter Tynan from Canada's east coast and bari sax player Lington from the US west cover all the bases in this very enjoyable... read more

Gordon Lee - This Path
by Kyle O'Brien, Jazz Society of Oregon

Pianist/arranger/composer Lee is always good for a listen. His distinct style is engaging, with thick, layered chords and a robust feel. On this disc, he acknowledges his many travels and influences, and the result is a global jazz sound that remains cohesive, thanks to Lee's arrangements. It begins with "Pao Ma Shan," a modal Chinese folk song that Lee transforms into a pensive jazz tune. It's played by the first of two trios on this album,... read more

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