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Nextbop Interviews Rudresh Mahanthappa

Sébastien Hélary
Co-Founder
s.helary@nextbop.com / @helaryous

Last October, alto saxophonist and composer Rudresh Mahanthappa reunited his trio, the Indo-Pak Coalition which features guitarist Rez Abbasi and tabla player Dan Weiss, for a new LP entitled Agrima, the long-awaited follow-up to 2008’s Apti. For this record, Mahanthappa and the group are seen expanding aesthetic horizons: adding a modified drum set, incorporating effects and electronics, and working with a broader audio canvas overall. The core of the band's sound, the vibrant presence of Indian rhythmic and melodic elements in a charged, modern improvisational framework born of the New York jazz scene, remains firmly in place, but Mahanthappa's alto is transformed in places by software-driven effects to create strange processed timbres, echoes, decays and soundscapes. We caught up with Mahanthappa to discuss the release.

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Brian Kiwanuka's Favorite Jazz Albums of 2017

Brian Kiwanuka
Contributing Writer
bkiwanuka91@gmail.com

It may seem a bit odd that a year-end list on a jazz publication only includes seven albums. As always, there has been a good amount of quality jazz releases this year. However, some of these records captivated me so much that I ended up devoting an obscene amount of time to them. Highlights include how Gerald Clayton returned and somehow matched the high quality of his last record and Mary Halvorson in general, who continues to be unflinchingly experimental, unique and brilliant - as a sidewoman and a bandleader. My favorite jazz moment of the year has to be when I saw Halvorson’s outstanding octet at the Village Vanguard, but as that concert was unfortunately not recorded, I will happily settle for the great records below.

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Brian Kiwanuka's Favorite Non-Jazz Albums of 2017

Brian Kiwanuka
Contributing Writer
bkiwanuka91@gmail.com

Maybe it’s not saying much, as I feel like I have been coming to this conclusion often yearly, but there were some truly fantastic records released this year. It would be a bit dishonest if I didn’t mention that as someone who fell in love with music through hip-hop, the genre is definitely the one that I keep up with the most. Left-field hip hop - the more lyrically abstract and experimental stuff - had some releases that I’m sure I will be consistently returning to. In regards to other genres, I discovered the music of a singer/songwriter from Peru who, with just two succinct albums, is now one of my favorite current musicians. Speaking of singers/songwriters, another one of my favorites also dropped a great album this year. Check out my top 10 non-jazz records of 2017 below.

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Nextbop Radio Hour (Ep. 4 | Christmas Edition)

Sébastien Hélary
Co-Founder
s.helary@nextbop.com / @helaryous

We’re back on this very special Christmas day inaugurating the brand new mic Santa got us. Hope you enjoy this week’s edition of the Nextbop Radio Hour featuring Christmas favorites by Gregory Porter, Wynton Marsalis’ Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra featuring Cecile McLorin Salvant, Diana Krall & the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra, Willie Nelson & Norah Jones, Jimmy Fallon, Mariah Carey & the Roots, Michael Buble & Ariana Grande, Pentatonix featuring Tori Kelly, Bing Crosby & the Andrews Sisters, Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald, Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder and John Coltrane. The set is eclectic, some might say weird… but we like weird over here at Nextbop.

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The Line-Up for 22 December 2017

Anthony Dean-Harris
Editor-in-Chief
anthony.deanharris@nextbop.com / @i_ADH

Merry Christmas, everyone! This week's Line-Up runs down Nextbop's Favorite Jazz Albums of 2017, so it's a particularly good show to catch. (It's also a particularly easy show to program, but that's another point altogether.)

The Line-Up for 22 December 2017