Origin Records Reviews

Jessica Williams - With Love
by Doug Ramsey, Rifftides

This masterpiece of quiet reflection is the pianist's first recording since surgery repaired spinal deterioration that kept her out of action for more than two years. With exquisite slowness, she explores eight standard ballads and her composition "Paradise of Love." In her notes, Williams writes, "I wanted to make an album that while still rooted in jazz, relied less on technique and improvisation and more on Jessica Williams Smiling 3... read more

Andrew Rathbun Large Ensemble - The Atwood Suites
by Jerome Wilson, All About Jazz

4 1/2 STARS Andrew Rathbun is a Canadian saxophonist who has made a major musical statement here with this collection of suites, two of which are based on the poetry of author Margaret Atwood. Rathbun's writing shows the influence of another Canadian, Kenny Wheeler, in its lush sonority, the frequent gorgeous flugelhorn solos by Tim Hagans and the role of Luciana Souza, who both sings Atwood's poetry with gentle forcefulness and moans... read more

Bobby Selvaggio - Short Stories
by Mark Corroto, All About Jazz

Like the Japanese calligraphy art know as enso, the condensed and succinct introduction alto saxophonist Bobby Selvaggio delivers on the track "Price Of Being (Intro)" is a disciplined stroke, delivered with an ease and elegance that belies the character and control required for such a statement. He works his instrument through this exercise with such command and strength, the sound gives the impression it is effortless.

But then, such is... read more

Marcos Varela - San Ygnacio
by Scott Albin, Amazon

Although Marcos Varela was born and raised in Houston, his roots go back to the tiny Texas town of San Ygnacio and the family ranch that dates back to at least the 1750's-- hence this album's title. From Varela's New York City base of the past 12 years, the active bassist has performed with such artists as Jason Moran, Geri Allen, the Mingus Big Band, and Kendrick Scott, while also composing music for film and TV. For his first CD as a... read more

2x2: Galvao/Santiago/Landais/Enouf - 2x2
by Gregg Daniel Miller, Free Jazz Blog

***** (Five Stars)

As Bad Luck, Neil Welch (tenor saxophone & live electronics) and Chris Icasiano (drums) have played roughly 60 shows a year for over 10 years. Their latest CD out on Origin Records, Four, displays the mature, complex seamlessness which comes from two players who know what the other is about. Welch's dexterous chops atop his use of drone and chorus pedals (plus studio work by Randal Dunn) combine with Icasiano's tom-heavy... read more

Chad McCullough & Bram Weijters - Abstract Quantities
by Hobart Taylor, KUCI, Irvine, CA

Trumpeter McCullough and pianist Weijters recorded this very contemporary sounding disc last summer in Brussels. Like Robert Glasper, Vijay Iyer, The Bad Plus, and Kris Bowers, sometimes they use traditional jazz instrumentation and structure to enhance melodies and beats that might resonate for audiences weaned on acid jazz and hip-hop, for example, "Billions". "Mr. Rubato", on the other hand evokes the image of a soul wandering among rocky... read more

John Stowell and Dave Liebman - Blue Rose
by George W. Harris, Jazz Weekly

RINGER OF THE WEEK If you're not a sucker for duet albums, maybe THIS one will change your mind. Acoustic guitarist John Stowell sits down by the fireplace with Dave Liebman for a collection of duets that sounds like a conversation between masters of their craft, which is exactly what it is.

Liebman, who is better known for being a bit on the left of center side of music, reigns in like a stallion while delivering deft performances on... read more

Corey Christiansen - Outlaw Tractor
by Michael G. Nastos, All Music Guide

Warmth oozes out of the music on this CD created by guitarist Corey Christiansen and his quartet, a comfy blend of contemporary jazz, bop or post-bop, and soul-jazz. Organist Pat Bianchi and saxophonist David Halliday create that feeling, playing unison lines that, between the three instrumentalists, give the listener a comfort zone that is both refreshing and accessible, given the more complex music modern jazz usually offers up. To say it's... read more

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