Rhapsody Streamnotes: March 30, 2016

Slowed down this month, but looking at the list I don't think I have much to apologize for: 120 records is the fewest this year, and the elapsed time is the longest between columns in quite some while, but neither by much. Of the 91 new records, 73 are 2016 releases, so 80.2%. I don't think I ever consciously decided to move on, but I ran out of 2015 CDs some time back (OK, I still have a cassette tape I can't play, and that Kansas reunion album), and I've been keeping my dwindling new jazz queue close to empty.

I'm still not doing any serious 2016 prospecting. I do have a m2016 file but it's mostly tracking what I've heard (or unpacked), with only a handful of unheard items added to remind myself to look them up. This is a big cutback from the m2015 file, which I updated every week from AMG and other release sources, then added stragglers from EOY lists (the lines difference is 7250 to 320). In the near future I expect to add Jason Gubbels's first quarter list, and maybe some other more/less trusted sources (I have been listening to almost everything Robert Christgau and Michael Tatum have recommended, aside from the Kanye West mixtape that snuck past me).

The Old Music section continues to be haphazard, with most records picked up as background when I was considering new (or in the case of Larry Young new-old, which featured Nathan Davis) work. I suppose Horace Parlan is an exception: my favorite Parlan album is the 1977 duo he did with Archie Shepp, Goin' Home, and when I noticed it on Rhapsody I had brief hopes that I might find more albums on the Steeplechase label. That didn't really work out, but I did find a couple old Blue Notes I wanted to check out.

Most of these are short notes/reviews based on streaming records from Rhapsody (other sources are noted in brackets). They are snap judgments based on one or two plays, accumulated since my last post along these lines, back on February 25. Past reviews and more information are available here (7920 records).

Recent Releases

Raul Agraz: Between Brothers (2013-15 [2016], OA2): Trumpet player, from Venezuela, first album, long list of musicians but recorded over several sessions -- the song-by-song credits average about nine per cut (not counting the extra strings). Latin big band, doesn't strike me as special. B [cd]

Melissa Aldana: Back Home (2015 [2016], Wommusic): Tenor saxophonist, won a Monk prize which got her a record out on Concord, well regarded in 2014 and not without merit. But I prefer this fairly mainstream sax trio, with Pablo Menares on bass and Jochen Rueckert on drums. Nothing especially fancy, four originals, two pieces each from the band, Kurt Weill's "My Ship." B+(***) [cdr]

Anderson .Paak: Malibu (2016, OBE/Steel Wool/ArtClub/Empire): Brandon Paak Anderson, who previously did business as Breezy Lovejoy, from Oxnard, CA. Second album, sings and raps, the beats skewed out a bit stoned. Seems to have worked as a "marijuana farmer" some while back, then did a stint as homeless, so he can do down and out and get through it somehow. A-

Ehud Asherie: Shuffle Along (2015 [2016], Blue Heron): Pianist, born in Israel but moved to Italy when he was three, then to New York at nine, where he hung around Smalls and took lessons from Frank Hewitt. Career has moved from bop to swing, and takes a further step back here with his "solo piano interpretations from [Eubie] Blake and [Noble] Sissle's 1921 Broadway musical" -- best known for "I'm Just Wild About Harry," given two treatments here. B+(***) [cd]

Audio One: What Thomas Bernhard Saw (2014 [2015], Audiographic): Ten-piece Ken Vandermark group, third album for this project. With all the alumni, I'm tempted to describe this more of a souped-up Vandermark 5 (Dave Rempis and Mars Williams join in on reeds, Jeb Bishop returns on trombone, and Tim Daisy is the drummer) than a big band project per se, The four Vandermark dedications are tightly conceived even though they each expand to 15-20 minutes. Band includes cornet (Josh Berman), another sax (Nick Mazzarella), vibes (Jason Adasiewicz), viola (Jen Paulson), and bass (Nick Maori, both acoustic and electric). A- [bc]

Kenny Barron Trio: Book of Intuition (2015 [2016], Impulse): Pianist, now in his 70s, has many dozens of albums since 1973, also a very distinguished career as an educator. Trio with Kiyoshi Kitagawa (bass) and Johnathan Blake (drums). B+(**)

Steve Barta: Symphonic Arrangement: Suite for Flute and Jazz Piano Trio (2015 [2016], Steve Barta Music): Cover recalls composer-pianist Claude Bolling's original 1975 album (headlined by flautist Jean-Pierre Rampal). Barta rearranged, giving the leads to Hubert Laws (flute) and Jeffrey Biegel (piano). Not something I care enough to compare versions of, but it passed by pleasantly enough. B [cd]

B.J. the Chicago Kid: In My Mind (2016, Motown): AMG says "Contemporary R&B" -- means Bryan James Sledge sings in a context more or less defined by hip-hop, although the son of church choir directors and the former backup for Stevie Wonder also has much fondness for the sweet ballad. Sprawling album, runs over an hour and could use some editing, but if I listened to it enough to figure out where I might forget why. A-

Michael Blake: Fulfillment (2016, Songlines): Tenor saxophonist (sometimes soprano), from Canada but based in New York, recorded this "conceptual" project -- a suite based on "a tragic immigration incident in Vancouver in 1914, when a Japanese freighter carrying several hundred East Indian immigrants (almost all Sikh) was turned away using exclusionist, racist laws." Recorded with a Vancouver-based group -- JP Carter, Peggy Lee, Chris Gestrin, Ron Samworth, André Lachance, Dylan van der Schyff -- the lyrics may help detail the story but disrupt the flow, which can be quite dramatic without them. B+(*)

Cristina Braga & Brandenburger Symphoniker: Whisper (2015 [2016], Enja): Brazilian harpist with the Orquesta Sinfónica do Teatro Municipal do Rio de Janeiro, also sings, backed by Modern Samba Quartet and a German symphony orchestra, with guitarist-vocalist Dado Villa-Lobos as a "special guest." Brazilian pop with serious classical airs, not a direction I'm inclined to favor. B- [cd]

Renato Braz: Saudade (2005-15 [2016], Living Music): Brazilian crooner, plays guitar but isn't credited with writing these songs -- cue in the usual suspects -- but aside from the live "bonus track" at the end they all sound like mopey ballads to me. Recorded over a decade, guest spots for Dori Caymmi and Ivan Lins, various bands including the Paul Winter Consort and the Dmitri Pokrovsky Ensemble. C [cd]

Andy Brown Quartet: Direct Call (2015 [2016], Delmark): Guitarist from Chicago, had a solo album last year, follows it up with piano trio-plus-guitar (no horns), Jeremy Kahn the pianist. Swing lines -- starts with "The Jeep Is Jumpin'" -- keep it nice and unthreatening. B+(*) [cd]

Rich Brown: Abeng (2015 [2016], self-released): Electric bassist, based in Toronto, album has a logo for Canada Council for the Arts but no label ID. Luis Deniz shows impressive range on alto sax, backed by Chris Donnelly or Robi Boros on piano, drums, extra percussion, with phat bass tones everywhere. B+(**) [cd]

Oguz Buyukberber/Tobias Klein: Reverse Camouflage (2015 [2016], TryTone): Clarinet duets, both musicians also switching off to bass or contrabass clarinets. Both are based in the Netherlands, the former born in Turkey, the latter in Germany and better known for ICP Orchestra. Avant, tone can get on your nerves at points. B+(**) [cd]

Rex Cadwallader/Mike Aseta/Arti Dixson/Tiffany Jackson: A Balm in Gilead (2015 [2016], Stanza USA): Piano-bass-drums trio plus soprano diva, intentional culture clash as the trio busts up mostly trad ballads while the singer puts them into a shrill straitjacket. Title song, "Deep River," "This Little Light of Mine," "Motherless Child," "Elijah Rock," "Every Time I Feel the Spirit," couple more, feathered out a bit by five "Trialogue" pieces, where the singer shuts up while the trio does something interesting. I can't stand opera, but get her sense of flow. Not something I enjoy. B- [cd]

Taylor Cook: The Cook Book (2015 [2016], self-released): Saxophone player from British Columbia, based in Toronto, employs some twenty musicians to spice up his schmaltz, not always to good effect. Still, I always enjoy "On the Sunny Side of the Street." B [cd]

Patrick Cornelius: While We're Still Young (2014 [2016], Whirlwind): Alto saxophonist (also soprano and flute), has a handful of records since 2006, this one a rather fancy postbop octet, mostly name players who do a lot of bobbing and weaving. B+(*) [cd]

Cowboys & Frenchmen: Rodeo (2015, Outside In Music): Postbop quintet, led by two saxophonists (Owen Broder and Ethan Helm), with piano, bass, drums, the group named after a short film by David Lynch. B+(*) [cdr]

Tim Daisy: Relucent: Music for Marimba, Radios and Turntables (2016, Relay): Chicago drummer, the last in the Vandermark 5 and a regular in post-V5 groups with Vandermark and/or Dave Rempis. This is solo, a tape collage of soft percussion and ambient sound. Not much, really. B [bc]

Dawes: All Your Favorite Bands (2015, Hub): Well, don't know about you, but all my favorite bands are much better than this Poco wannabe. (What? You don't remember Poco?) B-

Daveed Diggs: Small Things to a Giant (2012 [2015], Deathbomb Arc): Rapper from Oakland, came up in the underground group Clipping; first album on his own, a real tour de force, smart and snappy with rapidfire raps, the speed and dexterity which won him a Grammy for the roles of Thomas Jefferson and Marquis de Lafayette in Hamilton, but even more impressive as himself. A- [bc]

The Dominican Jazz Project (2015 [2016], Summit): Pianist Stephen Anderson seems to have been the catalyst if not the leader here, connecting with various musicians on visits to the Dominican Republic, like Guillo Carias (clavietta), Sandy Gabriel (tenor/soprano sax), Guy Frömeta (drums), and Carlos Luis (vocals, guitar). A mixed bag with multiple appeals. B+(*) [cd]

Drive-By Truckers: It's Great to Be Alive! (2014 [2015], ATO, 3CD): I put this off on the theory that 3:16:13 of anything is too much to pay attention to streaming -- which didn't keep my ears from perking up for the line that goes, "and all them politicians, they all lyin' sacks of shit" (I was writing about Donald Trump at the moment, although it could just as easily have been Marco Rubio, or Hillary Clinton). A couple decades worth of songs, redundant if you've followed them, but terrific as background noise, nicely unified by the live sound and occasional patter. On separate discs I imagine the length will only become more tolerable. A-

Florian Egli Weird Beard: Everything Moves (2014 [2016], Intakt): Swiss quartet, has a previous album without the leader-saxophonist's name on the cover. Egli is backed by guitar (Dave Gisler), electric bass, and drums. Most compelling when they put a litle rock muscle into the rhythm, but the first word in the booklet is "Gelassenheit" -- serenity. B+(***) [cdr]

Marty Elkins: Walkin' by the River (2014 [2016], Nagel Heyer): Standards singer, from New Jersey, third album, with guitarist Howard Alden swinging, both piano (Steve Ash) and organ (Joel Diamond), and a stellar turn by Jon-Erik Kelso on trumpet. B+(***) [cd]

Moppa Elliott: Still Up in the Air (2015 [2016], Hot Cup): Solo bass album by the leader-composer behind Mostly Other People Do the Killing, easily the most consistently awesome jazz group of the past decade. The pieces are all called "Sequence" and some number up to fourteen, but not the complete set. B+(**) [cd]

Darren English: Imagine Nation (2014 [2016], Hot Shoe): Trumpet player, first album, leads a hot boppish quartet with Kenny Banks Jr. on piano, sometimes adding Greg Tardy on sax, switching up on two tracks where Carmen Bradford sings standards ("What a Little Moonlight Can Do" and "Skylark"). Brings two extra trumpets in for the finale, a mad race through "Cherokee." B+(*) [cd]

Piere Favre: DrumSights NOW (2015 [2016], Intakt): Drummer, from Switzerland, will turn 80 next year, old enough to have played with Albert Nicholas in the 1950s but best known (in my household at least) for three superb duo albums with pianist Irčne Schweizer. His own discography has several albums with drum quartets, so I imagine he sees DrumSights as a successor group to his Singing Drums. Joined here by Chris Jaeger, Markus Lauterberg, and Valeria Zangger, the group plays as one -- which makes this seductive album slightly less than the sum of its parts. B+(***) [cdr]

David Fiuczynski: Flam! Blam! Pan-Asian MicroJam (2015 [2016], Rare Noise): Guitarist, nicknamed "The Fuze" as if his music was fusion enough. Has close to ten albums since 2000, including group efforts as Screaming Headless Torsos. Goes for exotica here, including microtonal keyboards, a Chinese oboe and percussion, and three cuts with alto saxophonist Rudresh Mahanthappa. Should be interesting, but nothing quite works out right. B [cdr]

Socrates Garcia Latin Jazz Orchestra: Back Home (2015 [2016], Summit): Composer-arranger-guitarist, from Dominican Republic, teaches at University of Northern Colorado, leads a big band with the usual horns and extra guitar and percussion through a set of originals, concluding with his three-part "Dominican Suite for Jazz Orchestra." B [cd]

Danny Green Trio: Altered Narratives (2015 [2016], OA2): Pianist, from Southern California, fourth album since 2009, plays postbop with classical touches and a little Latin tinge. Augments his trio here with a string quartet for the middle cuts, expanding the sound so much I initially suspected an orchestra. Not the sort of thing I'm disposed to like much, but his sweep and flow is remarkable and the sensation just overwhelms you. B+(***) [cd]

Jeff Guthery: Black Paintings (2015 [2016], self-released): Drummer, inspired by Goya paintings, backed by several jazz notables -- Kenny Werner, George Garzone, Bruno Rĺberg, David Fiuczynski -- and the East Coast Scoring Orchestra giving it a distinctly euroclassical air, maybe something Nutcracker-ish (at least when Garzone isn't soloing). B- [cd]

Hanami: The Only Way to Float Free (2015 [2016], Ears & Eyes): Chicago quartet, guitarist Andrew Trim wrote all the pieces and effectively leads, flanked by two horns -- Jason Stein on bass clarinet and Mai Sugimoto on alto sax and clarinet. Charles Rumback is the drummer. B+(***) [cdr]

Lafayette Harris Jr.: Hangin' With the Big Boys (2013 [2016], Airmen): Pianist, mainstream guy with a soul and funk background, nearly ten albums since 1993. Opens with two covers, then six originals, one by his alto saxophonist Caleb Curtis, and two more covers. The "big boys" include Houston Person -- tenor sax on five cuts -- Antoine Drye on trumpet, and three vocals by Jazzmeia Horn and/or Noël Simoné Whippler. Nice, relaxed, soulful set -- Person's marvelous solo on "The Very Thought of You" bumped this up a notch. B+(**) [cd]

Julian Hartwell: The Julian Hartwell Project (2015, self-released): Pianist, first album, hype sheet clearly attributes the album to the titular group but I usually go with the name leader. High octane octet: sax, trumpet, trombone, two basses, guitar, drums, a lot of firepower for a high energy postbop set. B+(**) [cd]

Joseph Howell: Time Made to Swing (2015 [2016], Summit): Clarinetist, from California, second album, quartet with accordion (Cory Pesaturo), bass, and drums. Standards, starts with "On the Sunny Side of the Street" then veers into Parker ("Confirmation") and Monk ("Let's Cool One"). High energy, the accordion beefs up the sound, the clarinet races. B+(***) [cd]

The James Hughes/Jimmy Smith Quintet: Ever Up & Onward (2015 [2016], self-released): Hughes (alto/tenor/soprano sax) and Smith (trumpet, cornet, flugelhorn) lead a hard bop quintet with Phil Kelly on piano, fifty-some years after the genre's heyday. Still can't call it retro, since it's pretty much the baseline postbop is built on, just without the cleverness that sometimes passes for innovation. B+(*) [cd]

Vijay Iyer/Wadada Leo Smith: A Cosmic Rhythm With Each Stroke (2015 [2016], ECM): Piano-trumpet duo, both major figures, so you'd expect something big. What you get, though, is pretty tepid, with the piano fading into the background as Smith does his slow-solo thing -- similar to his solo albums, perhaps toned down a bit with Manfred Eicher watching. B+(**) [cdr]

Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra With Wynton Marsalis: The Abyssinian Mass (2013 [2016], Blue Engine, 2CD): Featuring Damien Sneed, organist and conductor of Chorale Le Chateau, a red-robed vocal group which judging from the pictures outnumbers the big band by about five-to-one. Marsalis composed the music, drawing liberally on the gospel tradition and smattering the libretto with plagiarism from The Bible, and the Reverend Dr. Calvin O. Butts III adds some down home preaching. Where I grew up, mass meant something huge and heavy, and I can't say as I've encountered music so massive before. I try not to begrudge Christians their faith, but it can't be a good thing when it's reduced to two-plus hours of gloria in excelsis Deo, or in their down home vernacular, "glory to God in the highest." Comes in oversized packaging with a thick booklet and a DVD, all the better to remind you that in America generous donors are always willing to pay for trivialized amenities -- especially the kind that worship power. C- [cd]

Krakauer's Ancestral Groove: Checkpoint (2015 [2016], Table Pounding): Clarinetist David Krakauer, plays jazz with klezmer roots and branches: the rhythm generating a lot of energy and the clarinet threatening to screech. Band is built around electric guitar (Sheryl Bailey) and bass (Jerome Harris), and employs a sampler, plus a guest spot for Marc Ribot. B+(***) [cd]

Kyle: Smyle (2015, Indie Pop): Yet another singer-rapper from southern California, this one from Ventura. AMG lists this as his only album, then refers to another one (Beautiful Loser) -- maybe has something to do with also/previously calling himself Super Duper. Funny enough some pieces almost qualify as standup. B+(***)

Julian Lage: Arclight (2015 [2016], Mack Avenue): Guitarist, regarded as a Wunderkind, subject of a documentary at age 8, performed on the Grammy Awards at 13, joined the faculty at Stanford at 15. Still in his twenties, has continued to receive critical praise and plaudits although I'm not sure why. This is a trio with Scott Colley and Kenny Wollesen, originals with four covers, all nice stuff. B+(*) [cd]

Kendrick Lamar: Untitled Unmastered (2013-16 [2016], Top Dawg Entertainment): Eight tracks, no titles but recording dates, 34:06, presumably outtakes, sketches, throwaway experiments, released online because, well, what the hell? As someone who's never really got either of his widely accalimed studio masterpieces, I'm even more lost here. But nothing here is going to disabuse you of the notion he's a genius, even if it doesn't quite convince me. B+(***)

Tom Lellis: The Flow (2015 [2016], Beamtime): Jazz singer, AMG lists seven albums since 1979, plays keyboards but Dave Kikoski is the primary pianist here, leading a trio plus Jeremy Steig on flute and a long list of guests. Four originals, plus Lellis lyrics to several others -- mostly jazz pianists and his Brazilian heroes. Neither his voice nor his chops impress much as he slips and slides around too tricky melodies. C-

Charles Lloyd & the Marvels: I Long to See You (20B-15 [2016], Blue Note): Tenor saxophonist (also plays some flute), became very popular in the mid-1960s and continues to be one of the most highly regarded jazz musicians. Group here features guitarist Bill Frisell and steel guitarist Greg Leisz, along with Reuben Rogers on bass and Eric Harland on drums -- "Shenandoah" is a near-textbook example of Frisell's feel for Americana. Second half includes guest vocals by Willie Nelson and Norah Jones. Feels to me like he's coasting, but he does have entertaining friends. B+(**)

Los Bonsáis: Nordeste (2015, Elefant, EP): Noise-pop duo from Asturias in northwest Spain, soft shoegazey fuzz, attractive but not very substantial, especially as they squeeze ten songs into 14:28. B+(*)

Jon Lundbom & Big Five Chord: Make the Magic Happen (2015 [2016], Hot Cup, EP): Guitarist, band includes two saxes -- Jon Irabagon (alto) you know, Balto Exclamationpoint (tenor and his homemade "balto! saxophone") I don't recognize (although previous member Bryan Murray had also been credited with the less emphatic "balto saxophone") -- plus Moppa Elliott (bass) and Dan Monaghan (drums). Basically the same avant brew Lundbom has been mixing up since 2009 -- my pick is still the 2CD Liverevil (2014) -- so what's new this year (aside from the exclamation mark) is a marketing gimmick: the music is to be split up into four 30-minute digital EPs, the first out now, the others in April, June, and September. You can buy them "a la carte" or as part of a subscription, or you can pre-order a "beautifully packaged" 4CD box available September 30, which includes the downloads as they become available. B+(***) [cdr]

Jon Lundbom & Big Five Chord: Bring Their 'A' Game (2015 [2016], Hot Cup, EP): The second of this year's four EPs, available April 1 -- for promo purposes I got them both at the same time, popped both into the changer, and can't tell them apart. Would make a fine single album were they so inclined. B+(***) [cdr]

Loretta Lynn: Full Circle (2016, Legacy): Now 83, she hasn't produced albums with any regularity since the 1980s, with her latest comeback the Jack White-produced Van Lear Rose (2004). This one was organized by John Carter Cash and Patsy Lynn Reynolds. As with Cash's father, they set Loretta down several years ago to record the old songs, of which this is the first batch. She doesn't have as iconic a voice as Cash, but she's sounding pretty good here. B+(**)

Kirk MacDonald: Symmetry (2013 [2016], Addo): Tenor saxophonist, from Canada, not sure where but he has a dozen albums since 1990, most recorded in Toronto. Hard bop quintet with trumpet (Tom Harrell), piano (Brian Dickinson), bass (Neil Swainson), and drums (Dennis Mackrel). Unexceptional except for the trumpet player, who rewards whatever attention you can muster. B+(*) [cd]

Gabriela Martina: No White Shoes (2015 [2016], self-released): Singer-songwriter, born in Lucerne, Switzerland, studied at Berklee, based in Boston, first album (after an EP). All originals (except "A Night in Tunisia"), backed by guitar-piano-bass-drums with a splash of soprano sax and a dash of extra percussion. B [cd]

Meridian Brothers: Los Suicidas (2015, Soundway, EP): Colombian pseudo-group, principally Eldris Álvarez, here joined by organ player Jaime Llano Gonzalez, who works "foreign rhythms such as foxtrots or waltzes" into more traditional Colombian fare like cumbias, bambucos, and pasillos -- although not without raising the notion that it's all a bit odd. Eight cuts, 29:01. B+(**)

Hendrik Meurkens: Harmonicus Rex (2010 [2016], Height Advantage): Harmonica player, from Germany but mostly plays Latin jazz, originally made his mark playing vibraphone. This is fairly mainstream -- Jimmy Cobb is the drummer, with Dado Moroni on piano, Marcus Panascia on bass, and four spots each for Joe Magnarelli (trumpet/flugelhorn) and Anders Bostrum (alto flute). Nice showcase for his instrument. B+(*) [cd]

Dave Miller: Old Door Phantoms (2015 [2016], Ears & Eyes): Guitarist, first album, fusion thing with Fender bass (Matt Ulery), keyboards (Ben Boye), and drums (Quin Kirchner). The guitar is sometimes snazzy, but more often than not they rely on volume to try to get their point across (whatever it is). B- [cd]

Naked Truth: Avian Thug (2013 [2016], Rare Noise): Fusion quartet, not a "supergroup" but not unknowns either -- Graham Haynes (electrified cornet), Lorenzo Feliciati (electric bass, guitars), Roy Powell (organ, analog synths, prepared piano), and Pat Mastelotto (acoustic & electric drums). Some interesting wrinkles, but doesn't leave me thinking they've broken any ground. B+(*) [cdr]

Willie Nelson: Summertime: Willie Nelson Sings Gershwin (2016, Legacy): Generally a fine standards singer, mostly by sticking to basics and shying away from melodrama. Still, he has trouble getting the feel of these songs, his sly stutter far less pleasurable than, say, the broad showboating of Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald -- their takes readily come to mind whenever I hear these songs, but I can think of hundreds of versions I prefer, if only because unlike Nelson's they swing. Duets with Cyndi Lauper and Sheryl Crow are low points. B

Angelika Niescier/Florian Weber: NYC Five (2015 [2016], Intakt): Polish alto saxophonist, half-dozen albums since 2002, teamed with the German pianist and a pick up band in New York: Ralph Alessi (trumpet), Christopher Tordini (bass), and Tyshawn Sorey (drums). Three tunes by each of the leaders, bursting with energy -- especially strong showing by Alessi. B+(***) [cdr]

Kat Parra: Songbook of the Americas (2016, JazzMa): Vocalist, based in San Francisco, fifth album, mostly does Latin standards, this albums mambos and cha-chas, boleros and tangos no exception. Some guests, including Tuck & Patti, help out (if you call their efforts help). B [cd]

Christian Perez: Anima Mundi (2015 [2016], CPM): Guitarist, from Argentina, mixes classical with Latin percussion and bandoneon, decorated by flute or piccolo. B [cd]

Roberta Piket: One for Marian: Celebrating Marian McPartland (2015 [2016], Thirteenth Note): Jazz pianist, early albums (from 1997) on mainstream labels, has more than a dozen. Makes sense she would take McPartland as a hero. She gets ample support here for a lush tribute: Steve Wilson (alto sax, flute), Virginia Mayhew (tenor sax, clarinet), Bill Mobley (trumpet, flugelhorn), Harvie S (bass), Billy Mintz (drums), with Karrin Allyson singing one tune. B+(*) [cdr]

Leslie Pintchik: True North (2015 [2016], Pintch Hard): Pianist, from Brooklyn, has a handful of albums since 2003, mainstream, with the usual touchstones (notably Bill Evans). Trio work is quite nice here, although most of it adds extra percussion from Satoshi Takeishi, so it's trio only in spirit. Also, about half of the tracks add horns -- Steve Wilson (alto/soprano sax), Ron Horton (trumpet/flugelhorn -- and they expand on the spirit. B+(***) [cd]

Alberto Pinton Noi Siamo: Resiliency (2015 [2016], Moserobie): Pinton's a multi-reed player from Venice, credited here with baritone sax, clarinet, and bass clarinet. "Noi siamo" is just Italian for "we are." Leads a quartet here with Niklas Barno (trumpet) Torbjorn Zetterberg (bass), and Konrad Agnas (drums), recorded live in Stockholm. A real barnburner. A- [cd]

Richard Poole/Marilyn Crispell/Gary Peacock: In Motion (2014 [2016], Intakt): Piano trio, drummer listed first for no reason I've figured out other than that he usually gets listed last -- in my database I find him so listed behind Patrick Battstone and Coat Cooke, and his discography has a few more examples. Aside from a Peacock standard, everything here is joint-credited, presumably improvised. No complaints about the drummer, but the others are more famous for good reasons, evident here even when they're not especially flashy. B+(***) [cdr]

Iggy Pop: Post Pop Depression (2016, Loma Vista): Band pictured and named on the cover, with Joshua Homme (Queens of the Stone Age) listed first. Singer comes through loud and clear, but everything else seems unsettled. B+(*)

Pram Trio: Saga Thirteen (2015 [2016], self-released): Piano trio: Jack Bodkin (piano), Mark Godfrey (bass), Eric West (drums). Godfrey and Bodkin split six compositions, total 30:51. the sort of thing that often gets marked EP these days. B+(*) [cd]

Quantic: The Western Transient: A New Constellation (2015, Tru Thoughts): British techno producer Will Holland, has a substantial stack of records. This one is kept at arms length as "Quantic Presents the Western Transient." Discogs lists this as "smooth jazz," which is too prejudicial, but the record doesn't put up much of a fight. B

Quttinirpaaq: Dead September (2015, Rural Isolation Project): Austin, TX noise group, name presumably derives from the Canadian national park, located on the northern tip of Ellesmere Island, as far north as you can go in Canada. Third album, sheets of guitar playing "bleeding-noise industrial electronic rock . . . sounds like punk rock thrown violently into a paper shredder with no fucks given." I bailed out four cuts in, so cut it some grade slack. C+

Bonnie Raitt: Dig In Deep (2016, Redwing): Her best in quite some while -- my database nominates 1973's Takin' My Time but I've missed things and reacted badly to Michael Tatum's nominee, 1991's Luck of the Draw. She hasn't aged in the manner of blues singers, but there's nothing urgent here -- she's clear and articulate and has learned to pace herself, making this seem so natural you'd think she's been doing it so well all along. A-

Ratatet: Arctic (2015 [2016], Ridgeway): Bay Area group: Paul Hanson (bassoon), John Gove (trombone), Dillon Vado (vibes), Greg Sankovich (keyboards), Jeff Denson (basses, vocals), Alan Hall (drums), with Hall the leader/composer/arranger. Another postbop variant, the instrumentation setting them apart. B [cd]

Scott Reeves Jazz Orchestra: Portraits and Places (2015 [2016], Origin): Big band, leader plays alto flugelhorn but that's rather beside the point. Steve Wilson gets a "featuring" credit on the cover, and there are a handful of names I recognize in the band, like pianist Jim Ridl and vocalist (2 cuts) Sara Serpa. B- [cd]

Logan Richardson: Shift (2013 [2016], Blue Note): Alto saxophonist, born in Kansas City but based in Paris, 2006 debut (aptly named Cerebral Flow) impressed me, but this is only his second album since -- a big label affair with big names in the band, especially Jason Moran (piano) and Pat Metheny (guitar). So much talent cannot be denied, but doesn't fit together all that well either. Cover song from Bruno Mars. B+(*)

Rihanna: Anti (2016, Roc Nation): Mostly crawl along, not a good sign for dance-pop or even bump-and-grind, though often the oblique rhythms suggest something interesting is lurking about, and occasionally I get hooked -- "Love on the Brain" never fails. A-

Alfredo Rodriguez: Tocororo (2015 [2016], Mack Avenue/Qwest): Cuban pianist, based in US since 2009, third album, co-produced by Quincy Jones. Many vocals, some pieces quite beguiling in an almost childish way. B+(**) [cd]

Sidestepper: Supernatural Love (2016, Real World): British producer Richard Blair, learned to love Latin music living in Colombia, and brought back that fondness for a more conventional electronica treatment. B+(*)

Sirius Quartet: Paths Become Lines (2015 [2016], Autentico): String quartet, "blending the precision of classical music and the energy of 'compromvisation,'" appeared on an album with Ivo Perelman I liked, well, more than this. Mostly grates on my ears, though some passages are interesting, and I don't doubt their chops. B+(*) [cd]

Gwen Stefani: This Is What the Truth Feels Like (2016, Interscope): Blonde bombshell singer, a cover favorite of Blender magazine back in the day, which included two 2000-02 albums fronting No Doubt, and two 2004-06 solo albums. A decade later this is her third album, done with four production teams and an average of four writers per song, which for a pop album with hip-hop touches is about par for the course. I can't say much for her old work, but pretty much every song here clicks for me. A-

Zhenya Strigalev: Never Group (2015 [2016], Whirlwind): Alto saxophonist, based in London, don't know if he's native. Has a couple previous albums, but this is the first I've heard of him, and I botched the credit/title during unpacking. Core group is a trio with Tim Lefebvre on bass and Eric Harland on drums, and several additional musicians have guest spots. B+(**) [cd]

Henry Threadgill Ensemble Double Up: Old Locks and Irregular Verbs (2015 [2016], Pi): Not a Zooid album (an error I made in unpacking). In fact, Threadgill doesn't play; he's only credited with composition (four pieces, called "Part One" through "Part Four"). The ensemble does double up on piano (Jason Moran and David Virelles), alto sax (Roman Filiu and Curtis MacDonald), and bass substitutes (Christopher Hoffman on cello and Jose Davila on tuba), but only one drummer (Craig Weinrib). Impressive group, way beyond the star pianists. The composer gives them plenty to chew on, and they come up with one surprise after another. A- [cd]

The U.S. Army Blues: Live at Blues Alley (2015 [2016], self-released): Aka The United States Army Band "Pershing's Own," commanded by Col. Thomas Rotondi, Jr. I suppose I should be more generous to America's premier exemplar of state socialism, especially when they do something that doesn't involve killing and mayhem, but the lavish production grates at me as much as the mediocre music. A full blown big band (actually overblown with a fifth trumpet). To turn the late Robert Sherrill's book title around, military music is to music as military justice is to justice. C [cd]

Marcos Varela: San Ygnacio (2012 [2016], Origin): Bassist, from Houston, first album, wrote two (of eleven) pieces, picking up a few more from the veteran band: George Cables (piano) and Billy Hart (drums) are the core, with other rotating in for a few cuts -- Logan Richardson (alto sax), Dayna Stephens (tenor sax), Clifton Anderson (trombone). Rowdy, upbeat postbop, caught me at a bad time. B [cd]

Vox Arcana: Caro's Song (2014 [2015], Relay): Chicago trio, sort of an avant chamber group with clarinet (James Falzone) and cello/electronics (Fred Lonberg-Holm) along with Tim Daisy forgoing his drums his recent fascination with marimba and radio sampling. B+(*) [bc]

Wildhoney: Sleep Through It (2015, Deranged): Baltimore shoegaze group, Lauren Shusterich the singer, with two guitarists (Joe Trainor, Marybeth Mareski), bass, and drums. LP length, 10 cuts -- not easily differentiated but they do have a coherent, shimmering sound -- 32:13. B+(*)

Wildhoney: Your Face Sideways (2015, Topshelf, EP): EP came out in October after their debut album in January, stretches six cuts to 25:57, but that's mostly due to the 12:29 "noise drone" at the end. Actually, my first thought was ethereal, but it's really too glossy for that, strangely attractive. First five songs could be one for all I could tell. B+(*)

Jeff Williams: Outlier (2015 [2016], Whirlwind): Drummer, British, has a half dozen albums since 1994. Quintet, with tenor sax (Josh Arcoleo), guitar (Phil Robson), piano/keyboards (Kit Downes), and bass (Sam Lasserson, both double and electric). I hear a lot of mainstream postbop that is expert but uninteresting, but this has some bite and resonance to it without breaking avant ground. B+(***) [cd]

Wussy: Forever Sounds (2016, Shake It): Cincinnati alt/indie band, active since 2005, leader Chuck Cleaver had a notable earlier band called the Ass Ponys but picked up a dimension adding Lisa Walker to the band. This comes off both denser and spacier than their average album, which is reliably meaty -- though I can't say as I'm picking up many lyrics this time. But then I've always been slow getting them. A-

Michiyo Yagi/Joe McPhee/Paal Nilssen-Love/Lasse Marhaug: Soul Stream (2013 [2015], PNL): On the drummer's label, but the key player is Yagi on Japanese instruments (an electric 21-string koto and a 17-string bass koto). McPhee adds ballad tones on pocket trumpet, alto and tenor sax, and Marhaug is responsible for electronics and "other objects," while the drummer has a fairly easy day. B+(*) [bc]

Michiyo Yagi/Lasse Marhaug/Paal Nilssen-Love: Angular Mass (2011 [2015], PNL): As above, minus Joe McPhee, which is to say this is like stripping off the human mask and revealing the wires and contraptions underneath, not just raw but murky and inconclusive as well. B [bc]

La Yegros: Magnetismo (2016, Soundway): Mariana Yegros, from Argentina, based in Buenos Aires and France, a foudner of something called "electro cumbia" -- evidently no longer a Colombian exclusive. B+(***)

Youth Worship: LP1 (2015, Self Harm): Alt/indie group from New York, first album, released between two EPs. Songs have a certain snappiness to them, and they bring more than the usual noise to the fore. B+(***)

Tom Zé: Vira Lata Na Via Láctea (2014, self-released): Brazilian singer-songwriter, well into his 70s, came to notice in the US when David Byrne compiled his early work into two volumes in his Brazil Classics series. I never warmed to those volumes, with their disjointed rhythms and strange shape shifting, but I've enjoyed his later (more moderate, I think) work starting with 1998's Com Defeito de Fabricaçao, and this one continues in their vein, catchy despite its improbability. A-

Omri Ziegele Noisy Minority: Wrong Is Right (2015 [2016], Intakt): Alto saxophonist, from Switzerland, sixth album since 2002, his Zürich group Noisy Minority normally a trio with Jan Schlegel (electric bass) and Dieter Ulrich (drums, bugle), joined here by trombonist Ray Anderson -- adds another sonic layer, solo contrast, and (I suspect) some funk to the uneven grooves. A bit of spoken word early on suggests a direction they didn't take. A- [cdr]

Recent Reissues, Compilations, Vault Discoveries

Cheryl Bentyne: Lost Love Songs (2003-11 [2016], Summit): Standards singer, best known as part of Manhattan Transfer but has fifteen albums on her own. This one collects songs from three albums that only appeared in Japan: The Lights Still Burn (2003), Moonlight Serenade (2003), Songs of Our Time (2011). Torchy, gorgeous, "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow" sticks in your head long after the record ends. B+(***) [cd]

Borah Bergman/Peter Brötzmann/Frode Gjerstad: Left (1996 [2016], Not Two): A remarkable avant pianist whose recording career spanned from 1975 nearly to his death in 2012, paired with two avant saxophonists in one of those live matches -- this one from the Molde International Jazz Festival -- that represent a typical day's creation until years later, once he's gone, it gains an air of poignancy. B+(**) [bc]

DJ Katapila: Trotro (2009 [2016], Awesome Tapes From Africa): DJ mixtape from Ghana, beats mostly from modern electronica but hot enough to pass muster in a land reknowned for rhythm, the vocals a bit on the squeaky side, which I suppose could mean they've been jacked up like everything else. B+(***)

William Hooker: Light: The Early Years 1975-1989 (1975-89 [2016], NoBusiness, 4CD): A trawl through the avant drummer's early oeuvre. First disc starts with him solo, a failed soul singer backed only by his own percussion. Then comes two monster pieces with saxophonists: a 26:48 trio with David Murray (1975), and a 19:27 duo with a young and even more visceral David S. Ware. Second disc is more obscure, ending with a 16:07 trio with two saxophonists (Jameel Moondoc and Hasaan Dawkins). Third jumps ahead to 1988, a previously unreleased trio with Roy Campbell on trumpet and Booker T. Williams on tenor sax. Fourth gives you a set with Lewis Barnes (trumpet) and Richard Keene (reeds) and a 16:18 drum solo. All avant, very underground, and while the horns make a lot of noise, there's very little filler -- I think just one cut with bass, no piano or guitar -- so the drums always ring clear. A- [cd]

Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Orchestra: All My Yesterdays (1966 [2016], Resonance, 2CD): Jones was a veteran bebop trumpet player, elder brother of Hank and Elvin, better known as a composer than for his chops although his early records are remarkable. Lewis was a big band drummer who came to prominence with Stan Kenton and Woody Herman. In 1966 they put together a big band to play regular gigs at New York's Village Vanguard, a band which survived leader deaths in 1986 and 1990. This goes back to the band's first gigs, and it's hard to exaggerate how vibrant they sound. A- [cd]

Meridian Brothers: Devoción (Works 2005-2011) (2005-11 [2013], Staubgold): Nominally a Colombian band, although this collection of early sides seems to be the solo work of Eblis Álvarez. It certainly doesn't sound like a group effort: the music barely supports the idiosyncratic vocals in something more credible as psychedelic than the stuff the Rough Guide folks uncover. Reminds Christgau of Tom Zé, and I can hear that. A-

The Rough Guide to Cumbia [Second Edition] (1975-2012 [2013], World Music Network, 2CD): Successor to the label's 2000 edition, a new batch of (mostly) old songs, the last two dating from 2008-10, most of the others hard to pin down (two also show up in compilations from 1960-76 and 1948-79, so they could be older than I'm sure of). The cumbias have a marvelous bounce, passed effortlessly from band to band. Also includes a "bonus CD": The Rough Guide to Los Corraleros De Majagual, an important cumbia group dating back to 1962. B+(***)

The Rough Guide to Latin Disco (1975-2014 [2015], World Music Network): At least these New York tracks are relatively easy to locate: two-thirds date from the 1975-80 disco heyday, with Joe Bataan and Salsoul Orchestra scoring two tracks each. The others date from 2002 forward. The disco feint has a whiff of sellout to it and never really scaled the heights of disco ecstasy, but not for lack of energy, or chops. B+(*)

The Rough Guide to Merengue Dance ([2009], World Music Network, 2CD): The national style of Dominican music, closer in feel to cumbia than to salsa -- the ubiquitous accordion has something to do with that. The difference getween "merengue" and "merengue dance" seems to be speed, though I can't imagine dancing to any of these barnburners, even before I got old and decrepit. No idea on dates: I decided to just kick back and enjoy this one. Bonus disc is Mambeao by Carlitos Almonte, one of the accordion wizards. Seems to be unavailable separately. A-

The Rough Guide to Psychedelic Cumbia (1969-2014 [2015], World Music Network): First few cuts seem to date from the 1970s or a bit earlier but then there's a big jump to recent (although I only tracked about half of the songs down, and even old ones are likely to have recent youtube videos. Never clear what "psychedelic" means, but these are mostly instrumental vamps with extra but not super fancy percussion. B+(***)

The Rough Guide to the Best Arabic Music You've Never Heard (2008-14 [2015], World Music Network): No artist names I recognize (admittedly, not a very high hurdle), but all appear to be relatively recent, and they range fairly widely over the Arabic-speaking world. Still, easier to pick out "you've never heard" than "the best" -- not least because it's hard to find a unifying theme here. B

Larry Young: In Paris: The ORTF Recordings (1964-65 [2016], Resonance, 2CD): Organ player, broke out of the soul jazz groove when he moved to Blue Note in 1965 -- his album Unity (with Woody Shaw, Joe Henderson, and Elvin Jones) is a masterpiece, one of those Penguin Guide crown recordings. These lavishly documented, previously unreleased recordings are transitional, most from a quartet led by tenor saxophonist Nathan Davis -- a Kansas City native who moved to Paris in 1963 -- with Shaw, in blistering form, and drummer Billy Brooks. Young keeps those cuts simmering, but you don't wind up with a very good sense of how. Also includes a couple earlier cuts with various French musicians, including one with Young playing piano. B+(***) [cd]

Old Music

Anderson .Paak: Venice (2014, OBE/Steel Wool): First album for the Afro-Korean-Californian singer/rapper, sorts out his sound on moderately interesting songs, mostly about sex. B+(**)

Nathan Davis: Happy Girl (1965 [2006], MPS): First album, basically the same group -- Woody Shaw (trumpet), Billy Brooks (drums) -- as on Larry Young's In Paris but with Young playing piano (less distinctively) and Jimmy Woode added at bass. Opens with a flute piece ("The Flute in the Blues"). B+(*)

Drive-By Truckers: Gangstabilly (1998, Soul Dump): First album, with Patterson Hood doing most of the writing, Mike Cooley chipping in "Panties in Your Purse," both on guitar and vocals, plus pedal steel, upright bass, and drums, "the most country of any of our albums," although their attitude already cutting against the grain -- on the one hand, the hip-hop allusion of the title, on the other a song called "Demonic Possession" based on a Pat Buchanan speech (perhaps the one Molly Ivins thought "might have sounded better in the original German"). B+(***)

Drive-By Truckers: Alabama Ass Whuppin' (1999 [2000], Second Heaven): Live album, recorded over several dates in Athens and Atlanta, Georgia; repeats five songs from their debut, three from Pizza Deliverance, adds three songs including a wicked tale about "The Avon Lady" and a breakneck cover of Jim Carroll's "People Who Died," also working a little Lynyrd Skynyrd into "Steve McQueen." I had my doubts on the song with too much Jesus (too little sex), but toward the end they aimed for "live and loud" and got there. B+(***)

Drive-By Truckers: Ugly Buildings, Whores, and Politicians: Greatest Hits 1998-2009 (1998-2009 [2011], New West): Not sure that any of these songs qualify as hits, but the seven source albums showed slow, steady progress up the charts, hitting 50 in 2006 and 37 in 2008 (figures topped by three later albums, the highest at 16). Nor is the band so hit-and-miss you need a compilation (I have six of those albums at A-, with Gangstabilly a very near miss). Nor am I sure this improves on any of the six (or for that matter the odds and sods collected as The Fine Print). But the songcraft is very much there. A-

Kendrick Lamar: Overly Dedicated (2010, Top Dawg Entertainment): First mixtape, a year before Section.80 turned enough ears to get him on my radar, but following four mixtapes as K-Dot, an alias he still self-refers to here. Maybe half of this seems generic to the craft, but the other half is so spry and bubbly it bursts the seams. A-

Horace Parlan: Movin' & Groovin' (1960, Blue Note): Pianist, worked with Sonny Stitt and later Charles Mingus in the 1950s, had a terrific run with Blue Note in the early 1960s, starting with this trio -- Sam Jones on bass, Al Harewood on drums. B+(**)

Horace Parlan: Up & Down (1961 [2009], Blue Note): The pianist leads a hard bop quintet here with Booker Ervin (tenor sax), Grant Green (guitar), George Tucker (bass), and Al Harewood (drums). Opens with the guitarist in fine form, but Ervin tends to go with the flow rather than blast out of it, as he would a couple years hence. B+(***)

Bonnie Raitt: Bonnie Raitt (1971, Warner Brothers): Had a show biz father and a pianist mother, raised a Quaker, went to Radcliffe and majored in social relations and African studies, took a semester off, was befriended by a blues promoter, learned to play bottle-neck, and was discovered opening for Fred McDowell. First album, two originals buried in the middle of a mess of blues although she led off with a Stephen Stills song the label might have figured for a single but didn't bother releasing. B+(***)

Bonnie Raitt: Streetlights (1974, Warner Brothers): Fourth album, Jerry Ragavoy producing, no original songs, no blues, wonder whether she/they would have touched John Prine's "Angel From Montgomery" had he not also been on WEA at the time (as were her opening songwriters, Joni Mitchell and James Taylor). B

Bonnie Raitt: The Glow (1979, Warner Brothers): Still kicked around from producer to producer, this time landing with Peter Asher -- not much of a roots/blues afficionado. Starts with two Isaac Hayes songs, not a bad move. B

Bonnie Raitt: Green Light (1982, Warner Brothers): I buy that she's having more fun here, mostly due to upbeat rockers -- some suggesting she's been listening to Dave Edmunds. B+(**)

Bonnie Raitt: Nine Lives (1986, Warner Brothers): Her last album for Warners, one that sat on the shelf a couple years before she recut half of it to make it more hit-worthy. Christgau, who cares much more about her than I do, regards it as her worst (runner up: 2002's Silver Lining). I find it perfectly ordinary -- something she's done several times. B-

Bonnie Raitt: Road Tested (1995, Capitol, 2CD): Only two (of nine) of her Warners albums went gold, but her first three albums for Capitol went platinum (2-7x) -- less familiar to me with Longing in Their Hearts not even on Rhapsody -- leading to the profit-taking of this live double, reclaiming large swathes of her early songbook. Strikes me as perfunctory, but does make a whole out of the parts. B+(**)

Bonnie Raitt: The Best of Bonnie Raitt on Capitol 1989-2003 (1989-2003 [2003], Capitol): First three albums went platinum, cashing in on all the hard work the past decade while Warners paired her with one ill-suited producer after another. I'm not a fan of those albums (at least of the two better-regarded ones I've heard), but looking back I have to admit that her Grammy-grabbing MOR move produced some exquisite schmaltz. This collection goes down so easy you scarcely notice it -- beyond the warm feeling it leaves you with. What you do notice are the Road Tested remakes of old blues. A-

The Larry Young Trio: Testifying (1960 [1992], New Jazz/OJC): Organ player, born in Newark, first album, cut when he was still 19. Mostly trio with Thornel Schwartz (guitar) and Jimmie Smith (drums), plus two cuts with Joe Holiday on tenor sax. Two original pieces (plus Holiday's "Exercise for Chihuahuas"), standards and blues, not his breakthrough sound but impressive for the genre. B+(***)

Larry Young: Groove Street (1962 [1995], Prestige/OJC): Third album, 21 now, expands his trio -- Thornel Schwartz on guitar and Jimmie Smith on drums -- with Bill Leslie on tenor sax. Prestige was notorious for quickly cutting slapdash albums and I figure this was one, where the order of the day was "groove." B+(**)

Additional Consumer News:

Previous grades on artists in the old music section.

  • Nathan Davis: London by Night (1987, DIW): B
  • Drive-By Truckers: Pizza Deliverance (1999, Ghost Meat): A-
  • Drive-By Truckers: Southern Rock Opera (2001, SDR): A-
  • Drive-By Truckers: Decoration Day (2003, New West): A-
  • Drive-By Truckers: The Dirty South (2004, New West): A-
  • Drive-By Truckers: A Blessing and a Curse (2006, New West): A-
  • Drive-By Truckers: Brighter Than Creation's Dark (2007 [2008], New West): A-
  • Drive-By Truckers: The Fine Print: A Collection of Oddities and Rarities 2003-2008 (2003-08 [2009], New West): A-
  • Drive-By Truckers: The Big To-Do (2010, ATO): B+(***)
  • Drive-By Truckers: Go-Go Boots (2009-10 [2011], ATO/Red): A-
  • Drive-By Truckers: English Oceans (2014, ATO): B+(**)
  • Kendrick Lamar: Section.80 (2011, Top Dawg Entertainment): B+(**)
  • Kendrick Lamar: Good Kid, MAAD City (2012, Aftermath): A-
  • Kendrick Lamar: To Pimp a Butterfly (2015, Top Dawg/Aftermath/Intgerscope): A-
  • Horace Parlan: On the Spur of the Moment (1961 [1998], Blue Note): A-
  • Horace Parlan: Happy Frame of Mind (1963 [1988], Blue Note): A-
  • Horace Parlan: Blue Parlan (1978 [1979], Steeplechase): B+
  • Horace Parlan: Glad I Found You (1984, Steeplechase): B+
  • Bonnie Raitt: Give It Up (1972, Warner Brothers): A
  • Bonnie Raitt: Takin' My Time (1973, Warner Brothers): A-
  • Bonnie Raitt: Home Plate (1975, Warner Brothers): B+
  • Bonnie Raitt: Sweet Forgiveness (1977, Warner Brothers): B
  • Bonnie Raitt: The Bonnie Raitt Collection (1971-86 [1990], Warner Brothers): B+
  • Bonnie Raitt: Nick of Time (1989, Capitol): B
  • Bonnie Raitt: Luck of the Draw (1991, Capitol): B-
  • Bonnie Raitt: Fundamental (1998, Capitol): B+
  • Bonnie Raitt: Silver Lining (2002, Capitol): B
  • Bonnie Raitt: Souls Allike (2004 [2005], Capitol): B
  • Bonnie Raitt: Slipstream (2012, Redwing): B+(**)
  • Archie Shepp/Horace Parlan: Goin' Home (1977 [1985], Steeplechase): A
  • Archie Shepp/Horace Parlan: Trouble in Mind (1980, Steeplechase): A-
  • Larry Young: Young Blues (1960 [1994], New Jazz/OJC): B+
  • Larry Young: Into Something (1964 [1998], Blue Note): B+
  • Larry Young: Unity (1965 [1999], Blue Note): A
  • Larry Young: Of Love and Peace (1966 [2004], Blue Note): A-
  • Larry Young: Mother Ship (1969 [2003], Blue Note): B+
  • Larry Young: The Art of Larry Young (1964-69 [1992], Blue Note): B


Everything streamed from Rhapsody, except as noted in brackets following the grade:

  • [cd] based on physical cd
  • [cdr] based on an advance or promo cd or cdr
  • [bc] available at bandcamp.com
  • [sc] available at soundcloud.com
  • [os] some other stream source
  • [dl] something I was able to download from the web; may be freely available, may be a bootleg someone made available, or may be a publicist promo