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Charles Lloyd - The Sky Will Still Be There Tomorrow

Jazz legend Charles Lloyd returns with this 2LP release The Sky Will Still Be There Tomorrow.  Charles Lloyd's new studio album features a newly assembled quartet of four distinctive voices with the legendary saxophonist joined by pianist Jason Moran, bassist Larry Grenadier, and drummer Brian Blade. Recorded around Lloyd's 85th birthday concert, The Sky Will Still Be There Tomorrow is a majestic body of work that presents Lloyd originals new and reimagined. The double-album finds one of the most significant musicians of the 20th and 21st centuries still at the peak of his powers.  On Blue Note Records.

Jessica Pratt--Here In The Pitch

Here In the Pitch, the fourth album from the beloved, beguiling songwriter Jessica Pratt, was written and recorded between her home of Los Angeles and Brooklyn over the course of three years. Pratt enlivens her timeless, placeless folk sensibilities with newfound instrumentation and an expanded ensemble, both under the influence of 60s spectral pop. Whereas Pratt's 2019 record Quiet Signs floated elegantly in the ether, Here In the Pitch is entrenched in more earthen characteristics, as the title suggests, and her craft is emboldened with a newfound gravitas. From allmusic.com.  "...these songs find Pratt opening up her private sound world just enough to let a glimpse of its depth come through. Her songs are still wounded and far away, but the expanded instrumentation gives them a prismatic glow and makes for one of the most fascinating and repeatable sets from an artist who was already in a class by herself."  Fred Thomas

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Mdou Moctar - Funeral For Justice

Nigerien guitarist Mdou Moctar explores oppression, cultural preservation on follow-up to acclaimed Afrique Victime. The songs on ‘Funeral For Justice’ speak unflinchingly to the plight of Niger and of the Tuareg people. “This album is really different for me,” explains Moctar, the band’s singer, namesake, and indisputably iconic guitarist. “Now the problems of terrorist violence are more serious in Africa. When the US and Europe came here, they said they’re going to help us, but what we see is really different. They never help us to find a solution.” On the lead single and title track, Moctar addresses African leaders directly, bidding them: “Retake control of your countries, rich in resources / Build them and quit sleeping”. The song ‘Sousoume Tamacheq’ deals with the plight of the Tuareg people to which the band belong, and who are spread across three countries: Niger, Mali and Algeria.”Oppressed in all three / In addition to lack of unity, ignorance is the third issue.”

Helado Negro -- Phasor

Everything on Helado Negro's eighth album feels serendipitous, from its sunny electronics to its mingling of psych-rock, jazz, and kosmische to the understated yet undeniable grooves that give Roberto Carlos Lange's musings a flowing foundation. While Phasor feels loose and expansive, it’s Lange’s tightest collection—deep, atmospheric, meticulously executed. It’s aligned with 2019’s This Is How You Smile, which found him incorporating more upfront drums and bass and focused grooves. Sequentially, it follows the expansive hour-plus long Far In, whose title was inspired by new age legend Laraaji and created in lockdown, in Marfa, Texas - lyrically digging into connection and focused on being in quarantine. Phasor, in turn, is an homage to going outside again. It’s a returning-to-life record, remembering what the sun feels like and letting it warm your skin. 

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Vijay Iyer/Linday May Han Oh/Tyshawn Sorey - Compassion

Pianist-composer Vijay Iyer follows his 2021 ECM disc Uneasy - the first to showcase his trio featuring bassist Linda May Han Oh and drummer Tyshawn Sorey - with Compassion, another album in league with these two gifted partners. The New York Times captured the special qualities of this group, pointing to the trio's flair for playing "with a lithe range of motion and resplendent clarity... while stoking a kind of writhing internal tension. Crucial to that balance is their ability to connect with each other almost telepathically.”  , Iyer's eighth release as a leader for ECM, continues his drive to explore fresh territory while also referencing his forebears along the way, two of them long associated with the label. The album includes a lyrical homage to Chick Corea via the late pianist's valedictory interpretation of Stevie Wonder's "Overjoyed." Another tip of the hat comes with "Nonaah," a whirlwind of a piece by avant-garde sage Roscoe Mitchell, a key mentor for the pianist. Then there are Iyer's own melodically alluring, rhythmically invigorating compositions, ranging from the pensive title track to the hook-laced highlights "Tempest" and "Ghostrumental.”  ~Thom Jurek, allmusic.com

Crumb -- AMAMA

New York psych-pop band Crumb return with AMAMA, their most carefree and open-hearted album to date. A soundscape full of playful and patchwork experimentation — glitchy pitch-shifted vocals, cell phone recordings, nautical blips, sax mouthpiece solos, blasted drum samples, and piano strings dampened with Silly Putty — AMAMA continues to deepen the band’s hypnotic sound in a cohesive line back through 2021’s Ice Melt, 2019’s Jinx, and breakout EPs Locket and Crumb. Without a doubt, AMAMA is Crumb — singer and multi-instrumentalist Lila Ramani, keyboardist and saxophonist Bri Aronow, bassist Jesse Brotter, and drummer Jonathan Gilad — at their most animated.

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