anthony.deanharris[at]nextbop.com / @retronius
Ari Hoenig is versatile. The Philadelphia native has played jazz standards, Pink Floyd covers, and his own compositions with equal aplomb, and justifiably so. This year, Hoenig’s drumming has managed to stand out on two major albums: Threedom with Jean-Michel Pilc and François Moutin and his own Naïve Records release, Lines of Oppression. In both albums, Hoenig makes his distinct voice heard playing original compositions and jazz standards. Both albums manage to put deconstruction on a whole new level with masterful arrangements. However, Hoenig’s Lines of Oppression allows Hoenig to showcase his talents more. While the collaborative factor is clearly important in the jazz form (especially in piano/bass/drum trio of the Pilc/Moutin/Hoenig longstanding trio), Hoenig’s arrangements on Lines of Oppression allow for some spectacular drumming to shine through in unforeseen ways like in "Rythm" alongside Tigran Hamasyan's beatboxing, the intro to an equally impressive version of “Rhythm-a-ning”, or when crafting the perfect tableau of shifting tones and falling action in a sort of clunking time in the intensely powerful closer “Higher to Hayastan”. The man’s got skills and his group of the aforementioned Tigran Hamasyan on piano, Gilad Hekselman on guitar, and Orlando Le Fleming and Chris Tordini switching off on bass have equivalently impressive skills to put an album like this together. This is a pretty cool album that actually released earlier this year, but we feel that you should really give it a listen this week so something this good doesn’t pass you by.
In another note in the files of “Why Does New York City Get All the Nice Stuff, Phooey, I Hate You”, Darcy James Argue is premiering his new show, Brooklyn Babylon, with visual artist and animator Danijel Zezelj tomorrow, Wednesday, November 8, at the Next Wave Festival at the BAM Harvey Theater in Brooklyn. The show will run through the festival to the 12th.
anthony.deanharris[at]nextbop[dot]com / @retronius
Yet another great show filled with stuff that's played throughout my week and filtered into an hour for the masses. Oh, and I didn't say it on the air but check out Jonti. My last two mic breaks are his tunes and I've been engrossed with his new album on the Stones Throw label, Twirligig. Give this week's show a listen to understand what I'm talking about. Though there's a lot of other great music this week, too
The Line-Up for 4 November 2011
James William Hession III
I was recently speaking with one of my professors about a recent performance Brad Mehldau and Joshua Redman did at The New School last week. After asking him what he thought he replied, "I thought it was the most bad-ass display of cocktail jazz I've ever seen." Interesting, I thought. At that moment I had trouble thinking of an argument to it. In a lot of ways what he said was true. This music they presented could be pared down to cocktail music in its simplest form. So... I kept quiet. I laughed. I let it all go by. What my professor said ran deep though. That exchange we had kept coming back to the front of my mind over the course of the next few days. "What isn't cocktail jazz?" I pondered. Answers aren't easy to find.