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About xybert

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    Groove Merchant

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  1. Who are you just discovering?

    Ray Bryant. Horace Parlan. Cedar Walton. It's funny because Blakey's Drum Suite was one of the first jazz album that i really got in to. Ditto with Mingus Ah Um. Free For All was also a big hit for me when i heard it much later (and i loved Walton on other Blue Notes, particularly Donald Byrd's Slow Drag). For some reason i never really checked out their leader dates. I think i must have heard something of Walton's which put me off checking out his leader dates further, but anyway those first 3 Eastern Rebellion albums are so, so good. Now that i think about it, i remember getting one of his quartet dates on Steeplechase and really liking it but having to bin it because it had a catastrophic scratch. I wonder why i never sought more of his stuff out... Ray Bryant... i had previously checked him out a bit on Spotify but didn't feel the need to buy an album. Recently got the trio albums on Epic and Prestige from the fifties and they are so good. Dude has such an amazing feel. I also have the Con Alma album on Columbia which is also excellent. Those three albums sit in my collection as favourites. I've actually been trying to get my head around why Bryant was not a bigger name, especially having been on Columbia. I have my half baked theories but can anyone provide any insight? Horace Parlan... i've only gotten started by getting Us Three, an outstanding trio record.
  2. New Thelonious Monk album

    Wow, this is pretty exciting.
  3. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    This arrived for me yesterday and i've listened to it twice now. To be honest i'm having a hard time pinning down what i think of it. Part of me thinks that it's the type of album that would resonate more if you're more familiar with the artist. For me, a lot of these tunes are crying out for a band to come in and 'adorn' them, if that makes sense. A lot of vamps a la Keith Jarrett but they don't really go anywhere, some pretty songs a la Jarrett but they don't build and crescendo or have those dazzling runs like Jarrett. There are times where you're like "okay he's going to launch now," but he doesn't, he just carries on vamping until it fades out. Now, this can definitely be seen as a good thing, rather than a bad thing, and this is where mileages will vary. But on initial listens it feels a bit underwhelming. BUT, there's flavour there, there's a restrained ecstasy about it, and i think it's going to grow on me. I think that because there are those Jarrett flavours in there it just really throws you off. It's almost like he's a weird, alternate universe (or New Zealand lol) version of Jarrett. I'd be keen to hear what you think of it to be honest. If you had to pick between this or Piano Solos i'd go for Piano Solos, although this album has the potential to be much greater to my ears depending on how it grows on me. Cheers.
  4. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    Jimmy Giuffre - Night Dance Seriously hitting the spot.
  5. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    Cedar Walton - Eastern Rebellion This album kicks a ridiculous amount of arse. Billy Higgins is transcendent. There's a rare vitality here, the type of album that makes you fall in love with this type of Jazz all over again.
  6. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    No problemo! I think that NZ/Australia is a bit like Canada/USA. A lot of musicians and actors that i think of as being American are actually Canadian (i only found out recently that Rush were a Canadian band). We have a friendly rivalry with Aussie and it's a running joke between us that they 'claim' NZ musicians that are worth claiming.
  7. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    Hey man! I'm a bit of a Nock newbie, i've had one album of his for a long time, Open Door, a piano/drums duet album that came out on a NZ label in 1987 (hence i found the CD reissue here in a bargain bin for next to nothing). I think it's a gem, but it always sounded to me like he's aping Jarrett a bit at times (more on that later)... Nock is New Zealand born, and has largely made his career in Australia and overseas, but has recorded with NZ artists and for NZ labels here and there throughout the years. Lately i've been feeling the urge to listen to more jazz by NZ-born artists and was going through some of the stuff in my collection. At the same time i was browsing on Amazon Japan as usual and saw those Nock reissues. Listening to the samples i had doubts, but in the frame of mind mentioned above decided to order In Out and Around and Piano Solos. I know that you're familiar with In Out and Around, but just to lead in to my thoughts on Piano Solos: Knee jerk reaction was that there's a strong Jarrett influence, perhaps to the point of 'rip-off'. But listening in depth reveals the Jarrett influence to be superficial, especially when it comes to his solos, which was what hooked me in. Moving on to Piano Solos, again there's a strong Jarrett influence in the melodies, and quite a strong Corea influence too. Indeed, track 1 of Piano Solos sounds like a Jarrett Song (even the title, California Country Song, appears to ape Jarrett, or maybe it was just the zeitgeist of the time), and track 2 sounds strikingly like Corea. The more i've listened to IOaA and Piano Solos, the more the Jarrett and Corea comparisons fade and it becomes something 'other'. It's hard to explain and mileages will vary i guess. I definitely get something from his music that i don't get from either Jarrett or Corea (both of whom i'm fans of for the record). I know that i will be exploring a lot more of his music. Aaaaaaanyway, long story short, if you're a Nock fan i definitely recommend Piano Solos. I've taken the plunge and ordered Talisman, as well as his first recording under the band name of The 3 Out (a trio recording from the early sixties). Samples for Piano Solos and Talisman can be heard on Amazon Japan. Apologies for the ramble but your query gave me the opportunity to get out some thoughts on Nock! Cheers.
  8. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    Mike Nock - In Out and Around
  9. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    Hank Jones - Arigato Nice if slightly uneven album. It's a shame there's some sort of intermittent weird digital sounding distortion/frequencies going with the piano; not sure if due to the original recording or the transfer to digitial and/or CD mastering. Someone fugged up and it's really annoying.
  10. Jerry Lewis films

    Used to watch the Martin & Lewis movies on TV when i was a kid, my dad was a fan. I enjoyed them but i remember very little. There was one where they were in the navy? For his 'solo' films, i remember seeing The Nutty Professor when i was a kid, always thought i was cool because i recognised that Professor Frink from The Simpsons was at least partially based on him. I've also seen Hardly Working, helped me see the funny side when i was a young man applying for work and taking on jobs that i sucked at/didn't last long at.
  11. Outhere Music acquires HatHut Records

    The talk above reminded me that i have at times been put off shelling out for Hats due to the fact that i've encountered playback/ripping issues in the past with some of the ones that come in cardboard sleeves... scratches aside, these issues may not be actually caused by the sleeves, rather by something else in the manufacturing... anyway, i'm in a similar situation with Hat as i was with BS/SN, with so many here and there that i want and so many out of print or hard to come by... the thought of box sets is pretty exciting to be honest.
  12. This may have been posted in a separate reissue thread, but among other Steeplechase reissues all five volumes of the Golden Circle recordings are being reissued in Japan in April. Not sure if they're SHM-CDs but based on the price range i believe that they will be. I've been revisiting these recordings yet again and i really enjoy them. As mentioned above, they're riddled with what appear to be digital glitches (well, my discs were anyway), and it'll be interesting to see whether these new reissues clean them up.
  13. Bought most of them on SHM-CD last year (or the year before? time flies...). No regrets, it's excellent music. As a fusion fan, and an eighties fusion fan no less, i don't know how i managed to miss out on Holdsworth for so long.
  14. Interstellar Space is awesome, had a big impact on me when i first heard it. Said it before but my favourite is My Favorite Things. Just love that one so much. It makes me feel better, whatever the situation.