It's hard for me to explain why I'm so drawn to this performance. Spenser Liszt is a leader in the Denton, Texas, band Sky Window, who headed up the most recent Jazz for the Masses day party at this past SXSW and immediately blew all those in attendance away. Since then, Liszt and his compatriots have stayed on my radar. One of those blips include video of Liszt & His Disciples including bassist Mike Luzecky (also of Sky Window and plays with Horace Bray), drummer Jonny Harmon, and Chris Walker as emcee covering MF Grimm & MF DOOM's "Tick Tick…" (or the tail end of The Beatles' "Glass Onion"; six of one, half dozen of the other) and Samiyam & Evidence's "On a Limb" back in December. There's just something about Liszt's solo midway through that keeps running around in circles in the head. It's infectious, just like the original melody, but there's something more there. I noted in my latest SXSW writeup how these young musicians from Denton are just too talented to not have recorded material yet, so if you feel the same love for these guys, one should keep them on your radar like I am. In the meantime, get this version of "Tick, Tick…" & "On A Limb" stuck in your head by giving it some play after the jump.
We've spoken at length about our love of Gilad Hekselman's This Just In. I'm pretty sure I've sung its praises on this page just a couple months ago. So it would seem only natural that compositions so strong would get some love elsewhere, so a version from sometime bandmate bassist Petros Klampanis would be particularly apt. Klampanis is set to release his upcoming album, Minor Dispute, with Hekselman on guitar, Jean-Michel Pilc on piano, percussionist Jon Hadfield, and a string quartet. It's the string quartet that makes this take on Hekselman's "March of the Sad Ones" just a touch more interesting. Watch video of the group performing this tune, string section and all, after the jump.
Ben Wendel has dropped the third installment of his “The Seasons” project on us. March is a particularly stunning duet between Wendel on bassoon and Matt Brewer on bass. Check it out below the jump. Also if you missed January featuring Taylor Eigsti or February featuring Joshua Redman, we strongly suggest you go back and have a look.
We've been particularly excited lately about the upcoming release from trumpeter Dave Douglas. His upcoming album with his new group, HIGH RISK, features bassist Jonathan Maron, drummer Mark Guiliana, and electronic musician Shigeto. A few weeks back, they all dropped the first single, "Molten Sunrise", on us. Now they just released a second song, "Cardinals". Stream it after the jump.
Winner of the 2009 Monk International Bass Competition, Ben Williams is set to release his sophomore album Coming of Age April 21st on Concord Records. The album features Williams’ band Sound Effect, comprised of Marcus Strickland (tenor and soprano saxophone), Matthew Stevens (guitar), Christian Sands (piano and Fender Rhodes), Masayuki “Big Yuki” Hirano (synths and Fender Rhodes), John Davis (drums) and Etienne Charles (percussion) as well as special guests trumpeter Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah on the cover of Lianne La Havas’ “Lost & Found”, vibraphonist Stefon Harris on “The Color of My Dreams”, emcee/poet W. Ellington Felton on “Toy Soldiers (reprise)” and American soul singer Goapele on “Voice of Freedom (for Mandela)”. The album features nine original compositions by Williams as well as the aforementioned cover of Lianne La Havas’’ “Lost & Found” and a solo bass rendition of Nirvana’s “Smells LIke Teen Spirit”. Check out the short EPK below the jump. You can preorder the album on Amazon (CD & Vinyl).