Before you go any further, I have a important disclaimer. In reality, you may have noticed already I’m not your usual music reviewer. Most folks who generally do this are good to professional writers. I’ve been writing reviews since the late nineties, honestly I’m not sure if I’ve made much progress in this department or not. Nonetheless, the warrior in me perseveres simply because I love music particularly jazz that’s why I keep hammering away at this writing and blog business with hopes that my effort will indeed spark someone’s interest enough so they can get to know jazz a little bit better.
Will Downing -][- TOMORROW –Mp3– [Sophisticated Soul Records, 2012] –
Brooklyn native, Will Downing delivers the third in his amazing trilogy of soulful music appropriately titled “TOMORROW.” It’s difficult to bypass music like this, fans will indeed adore what Will is putting down on this album is just as mesmerizing as his previous recordings. Oh yeah, he vocally colorizes this collection of inviting yet uniquely seductive originals and re-voiced the classics like no other to make them his very own effortlessly!
The musicality of Downing is beyond descriptive, he’s vocally and lyrically an unsung hero in the land of living and deceased giants of soul music. I’m sure music lovers will appreciate the warmth and beauty contained in gem, Will’s vocals, style and lyrical approach to these songs are fitting for virtually any occasion. Be sure, and don’t miss out on this splendid album by Mr. Downing! —Rob Young | Urban Flux Media
David Binney -][- THIRD OCCASION –Mp3– [Mythology Records, 2009] –
For those of you might not be familiar with saxophonist David Binney, it’s time for you to become acquainted with the artist and his music. In my opinion, he is conceptually of the finest composers, saxophonist and improvisers in modern jazz.
As usual, he’s joined by a stellar cast of musicians that includes Scott Colley – bass, Craig Taborn – piano, and drummer Brian Blade. Often times when we view artists like Binney as being obscure, that’s only because they haven’t really listen to his music. Each album by him emerges with redeemed qualities that are unique and tangible, yet Binney’s perspective is compelling and his unexpected grace unveiled by him is simply breathtaking.
With each project, Binney thrives on pushing the envelop artistically and he does it brilliantly with the virile, accessible yet thought-provoking “THIRD OCCASION.” Since meeting “FREE TO DREAM” a few years ago, I’ve discovered that he is undeniably one of the most consistent and transparent voices in this genre.
For more information, I urge you to go here, to view David Binney’s notable and extensive repertoire of music. –Rob Young | Urban Flux Media
Jeremy Pelt -][- SOUL –Mp3– [High Note, 2012 | Review] –
There is so much music old and new to share with you with so little time to do it. Awhile back the clairvoyant Jeremy Pelt, trumpeter extraordinaire released his latest album on High Note aptly titled “SOUL.” The majesty of Pelt’s sound is layered with subtle, warm and soulfulness beyond his years. I’m tempted to compare him to other great players, however the transparency of his voice is beautifully expressed through his extensive catalog of music that speaks for itself.
There’s nothing simplistic about his voice, Pelt’s style dwells in the realm of his forefathers structurally. No surprise, driven by his devotion to retain the fabric of this music Pelt’s resilience to play straight ahead jazz with heartfelt fervor and temperance of his elders is a gratifying experience.
Moved by his passion and love for jazz, Pelt frames these gems with uncharted warmth and colorful phrasings balanced proportionally with his elegant tones creates a refreshing ambiance outlined throughout this body of work with unwavering intimacy on this stunning yet soulful masterpiece. —Rob Young | Urban Flux Media | 5.28.2012
Kirk Whalum -][- Hymns in The Garden [Warner Bros, 2001 | Review]
Occasionally, I love to return to albums that I haven’t heard in awhile. That said, I simply adore “Hymns in the Garden” what a splendid recording by saxophonist Kirk Whalum. In fact, I’m somewhat partial to his Gospel recordings for more than the obvious reason. The first time I heard this album I was blown away, I couldn’t believe it was Kirk Whalum.
From my point of view, his Gospel records not only expand his repertoire but they appear to be more adventurous and technically better albums. No pun intended, I dearly love and respect Kirk as a musician. After all, I’ve followed him since I heard him initially play on keyboardist Bob James “12” album. On the song Ruby, Ruby, Ruby, the soul of his horn resonated in my heart and soul for days.
Now back to Hymns, this is a one of kind recording by Whalum. On Hymns, he stretches the limit emotionally and artistically. Of course, the songs on this project are timeless, passionate, soulful and spirit filled as you would expect from Kirk.
If you haven’t heard “Hymns in the Garden” holler at a friend and see what’s up. This jewel will make a perfect addition to your collection, you definitely want regret your choice. –Review by Rob Young | Urban Flux Media
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