OA2 Records Reviews

Barney McClure Trio, featuring Mike Denny - Spot
by Larry Hollis, Cadence, Oct-Dec, 2007

Out of the Pacific Northwest, Barney McClure is an organist of a different stripe and his trio is much more in the traditional pocket which should delight hard core mainline Hammond heads. Apparent in McClure's annotation is his high regard and respect for guitarist Mike Denny. A recent arrival to the trio, Denny teaches at the University of Oregon and at a local community college yet still manages to find time to gig steadily around the area.... read more

Ben Winkelman Trio - The Knife
by Chris Spector, Midwest Record

His first set as a leader since moving from Oz to the Big Apple, Winkelman shows his penchant for coloring outside the lines with grace and the kind of finesse that shows this is much more than an exercise in creativity for the sake of creativity. With odd meters and unexpected switchbacks carefully made to look like casual toss offs, this piano jazzbo finds a way to mix the familiar with the unknown into a stew that keeps your ears on point... read more

Afro Bop Alliance - Revelation
by D. Oscar Groomes, O's Place Jazz Newsletter

O's Notes: This is a powerful Latin large ensemble that swings hard over eight compositions. Conductor Roland Vazquez, leader Joe McCarthy (d, perc), Victor Provost (steel pans) and Luis Hernandez (sax) all contribute original compositions to the mix. We especially enjoyed the vibrancy of "Creencias", "CuBop" and "Family of Four" making Revelation one of 2016's best Latin... read more

Sara Leib - Secret Love
by Chris Spector, Midwest Record

And sometimes everything lines up just right. Matt Pierson found a bunch of contemporary swingers eager to kick it out behind a fresh new vocalist looking to really kick it out for her second album. The result is a dandy, straight up jazz vocal date that's hard to resist. There's nothing about these classic numbers from different quadrants that's done by the numbers. Leib is a smart new vocalist whose arrival is overdue. Check it out.... read more

Chamber 3 - Grassroots
by , Jazz Society of Oregon

The Seattle/German collective Chamber 3 seems to burst with urgency. Propelled by the Emerald City's Matt Jorgensen on drums, Grassroots is an explosive exercise in stormy postbop, with fine playing from all involved. Particularly inspired is German saxophonist Steffen Weber, who spins an inspiring blend of bebop and angular lines with a smooth, smoky tone. Though he's less eager to hog the spotlight, guitarist Christian Eckert brings an... read more

George Cotsirilos - Silenciosa
by Adam Greenburg, All Music Guide

Silenciosa is the solo debut album from San Francisco sideman George Cotsirilos. He opts to use the classical guitar with nylon strings here a la Charlie Byrd to give the album a nice dimension of warmth throughout. The set is taken up entirely by standards, which actually ends up suiting the performance quite well, combining familiar sounds with the lightness of the nylon strings. The work opens up with a Rodgers and Hart number before moving... read more

Mark O'Connor - Suspended Reality
by Michael Steinman, Cadence

O'Connor and colleagues, heard on 'Suspended Reality', are sophisticated soloists and ensemble players. This is only O'Connor's second CD, and he shows great skill as a saxophonist. However, the CD presents all but two of his original compositions, which occasionally meander (his tribute to wife Betony an exception): the overall result is fervent but somewhat derivative late- period lyrical Hard Bop. But he is someone to keep an eye on in... read more

Michael Webster - Momentus
by Chris Spector, Midwest Record

The post ECM cool school vibe is alive and well in Brooklyn in the hands of Webster, Ingrid Jensen, Ike Sturm and the rest of the kids that are coming up and marking their paths. Call him Paul Winter's wayward progeny that veered off into ethnomusicology on Mars if you will but Webster is creating a new standard that others will turn into cliché. Tempting as it might be for moldy figs to play spot the influence, of course you can find Miles'... read more

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