Origin Records Reviews

Linda Tsatsanis & John Lenti - And I Remain: Three Love Stories
by C. Michael Bailey, All About Jazz

Sixteenth and Seventeenth Century vocal music with lute or theorbo has been enjoying a modern renaissance as evidenced by the recent releases of Monika Mauch and Nigel North's Musical Banquet (ECM, 2008) and Nigel North's Dowland recordings for Naxos. This is period music that immediately evokes images such as those captured in Ken Follett's Pillars of the Earth (William Morrow, 1989) and its sequel World Without End (Penguin, 2007). This is... read more

Yumiko Endo Schlaffer - Rhapsodie
by Alison Young, Harp Column

Like the luscious glamour of her CD cover, Japanese harpist Yumiko Endo Schlaffer plays with a luxurious richness as soft as the velvet she lightly places herself on. Rhapsodie is sheer grace and elegance.

I am convinced a great deal of planning went into this CD. It?s not just one beautiful number after another with several French pieces that leaves us breathless and relaxed?Yumiko takes us far afield. One of my favorites is from her native... read more

Idit Shner - Minerva
by Nicholas May, The Saxophonist Magazine

When it comes to the saxophone, or any instrument, it is uncommon for an artist to be well versed in two very different generes. Dr. Idit Shner, Associate Professor of Saxophone and Jazz Studies at the University of Oregon, has established herself as a multi-talented, bilingual saxophonist across her numerous classical and jazz albums. Although I have not yet listened to her full discography, I certainly will be!

The album's title comes... read more

Dan Dean - Songs Without Words
by Chris Lunn, Ancient Victorys

This is an unusual and special project. Dan Dean is known for his own groups, recording and mixing, and his collaborations with Tom Collier. I first encountered his works with a couple of different groups at the Other Side of the Tracks in the mid 70s along with his work with Collier, with whom he has been musical buddies even in their teenage years. His bass work and sound is found in many recording groups and engineers, because of Dean's... read more

Jim Gailloreto Jazz String Quintet - The Pythiad
by Chris Spector, Midwest Record

Take some lesser Greek mythology, mix it with some 50s flavored jazz into classical and you get a modern thing that sounds like it could be equally at home with the art minded or as a diversion for kids almost ala "Peter & the Wolf". Not exactly something you'd expect to be coming out of Chicago, this is a wild and wonderful set that exists in a time zone all it's... read more

Gwendolyn Dease - Beguiled
by Dan Bilawsky, All About Jazz

4-STARS While this fourth album from marimbist Gwendolyn Dease is rightly seeing release on the classical arm of Origin Records, it wouldn't have been completely out of place if it had landed on the jazz side of that imprint. Dease bypasses contemporary marimba fare and late twentieth century favorites from the usual suspects like Ney Rosauro, Casey Cangelosi, Joseph Schwanter, Keiko Abe, and Jacob Druckman, focusing instead on newly... read more

Gwendolyn Dease - Beguiled
by Dick Metcalf, Improvijazzation Nation

For some reason, marimba doesn't come across as something I think about a lot in the jazz arena... but in Gwendolyn's talented hands, you'll be amazed at the deep and rich textures she's able to paint on tunes like the opener, "Beija-flor", (penned by jazz bassist Rufus Reid)... one of the reasons (I believe) why this is so aurally attractive is because she takes a lot of time to develop the tune (it pegs in at 9:03). "G.W.G.E.", on the other... read more

Doug Lofstrom - Concertino: The Music Of Doug Lofstrom
by Daniel Coombs, Audiophile Audition

**** (4-stars)
Composer and bassist Doug Lofstrom has been composing prolifically since the 1970s. His diverse scores reflect his ongoing involvement in theater, dance, film and symphonic music. In the 1990s, he was composer-in-residence for the Metropolis Symphony Orchestra and during the 80s, musical director of Chicago?s Free Street Theatre. His works have been performed by the St. Louis, Atlanta and Oregon Symphony Orchestras, and... read more

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