Origin Records Reviews

John Stowell | Michael Zilber - Live Beauty
by Mike Joyce, JazzTimes

Anyone who has enjoyed previous collaborations by guitarist John Stowell and saxophonist Michael Zilber will be delighted to discover that nothing gets lost in the transition from studio to stage on this 2012 concert recording. It's an intimate quartet affair, marked by the kind of soulful, instinctual interplay that fans have come to expect.

In the album's liner notes, Stowell and Zilber briefly discuss their creative relationship, the yin... read more

Joe Locke - Force of Four
by Ken Watkins, 100 Greatest Jazz albums

Following the fusion influenced "Live In Seattle" (with Geoffrey Keezer) in 2006 and "Sticks And Strings" (with Jonathan Kreisberg) in 2007, "Force of Four" continues vibe player Joe Locke's very strong recent run of inventive albums.

The new quartet ? Joe Locke (vibraphone), Robert Rodriguez (piano and electric piano), Ricardo Rodriguez (bass) and Jonathan Blake (drums) ? is the ideal vehicle for a pleasing programme of innovative post bop.... read more

Nick Finzer - The Chase
by Chris Spector, Midwest Record

You have to love it when a cat can graduate from Julliard without letting it go to his head. Bone man Finzer takes his sweet time between releases and we are wise not to rush him. Charting some new courses that give us the opportunity to follow him without tripping, this fleet fingered, buoyant jazzbo makes his bone talk while supporting his composing and leading chops making the whole a real gasser. Inventive but keeping it's fun, spirited... read more

Dominic J. Marshall - Spirit Speech
by George W. Harris, Jazz Weekly

Pianist Dominic J. Marshall's star keeps rising on this session of originals with Tobias Nijboer/bass and Jamie Peet/drums. He's got a thoughtful touch that is able to be both swinging and romantic. His compositions are clever, sophisticated and accessible, ranging from the driving "Book of Machines" to the elegant ballad "Unflinchingly." A gentle but assertive groove leans forward on "Tiwanaku" while the team of bass and drum make some... read more

Joel Miller Sienna Dahlen - Dream Cassette
by Rotcod Zzaj, Improvijazzation

I've only reviewed one other release from Joel, back in issue # 83; it got high marks, but this new one is absolutely STUNNING! Joel's high-energy, high-talent saxophone work against the haunting vocal work Sienna does brings to mind (strangely enough) some of the best "pop" albums that I grew up with... in fact, they say in the liner notes that this is their idea of what a "pop release" should be. The player list is far too long to itemize... read more

Kelly Brand Nextet - The Door
by Neil Tesser, JazzIs

The latest and best album by Chicago pianist and composer Kelly Brand. Brand brings an understated beneficence to her music: when she backs other players, she offers dark full chords, while her own solos are thoughtful, uncluttered affairs ? good stories told simply and well. Her narratives have another advantage in that they are always backed by Kelly Sill, one of the finest bass players of his generation ? and also Kelly Brand's husband. The... read more

David Friesen Circle 3 Trio - Triple Exposure
by Dan Bilawsky, All About Jazz

4-STARS For most, a triangle is the shape that readily springs to mind when analyzing, discussing, and/or conceptualizing a trio. There's no mistaking roles and positions, after all, when there are three clearly defined sides. A circle, on the other hand, offers no beginning, no middle, and no end. In many ways it's a better analog for a band, but only if the shape fits. Needless to say, when it comes to the musical marriage of bassist... read more

John Stowell | Michael Zilber - Shot Through With Beauty
by Kyle O'Brien, Jazz Society of Oregon

Stowell is one of Portland's most refined jazz guitarists. He is versatile and sophisticated, along with being highly inventive. But instead of being brash like many bold improvisers, his persona is controlled and tempered. Here, with like-minded saxophonist Michael Zilber, bassist John Shifflett and drummer Jason Lewis, Stowell is well within his element. Playing covers, like a nice mellow version of Dizzy Gillespie's "Alma," or a modern... read more

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