Essential New Music: Don Cherry's "Cherry Jam"

Essential New Music: Don Cherry’s “Cherry Jam”

The COVID virus may have owned 2020, but 2021 is the year of Don Cherry. The Oklahoma-born trumpeter, whose curious
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Essential New Music: No Friends Band's "To All My Friends"

Essential New Music: No Friends Band’s “To All My Friends”

People make records for a lot of reasons, and who are we to judge? Music lovers, that’s who we are,
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Essential New Music: Roy Montgomery's "Island Of Lost Souls"

Essential New Music: Roy Montgomery’s “Island Of Lost Souls”

Forty years ago, Flying Nun Records released its first single. The Pin Group’s “Coat” imagined a world of sound and
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Essential New Music: Loren Connors & Oren Ambarchi's "Leone"

Essential New Music: Loren Connors & Oren Ambarchi’s “Leone”

Loren Connors has dueted with many guitarists over the years, but he always presents them with the same challenge. The
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Essential New Music: Richard Hell And The Voidoids' "Destiny Street Complete"

Essential New Music: Richard Hell And The Voidoids’ “Destiny Street Complete”

How much does an album really matter? That all depends on who you ask. If you’re Neil Young, you have
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Essential New Music: Spiral Wave Nomads' "First Encounters"

Essential New Music: Spiral Wave Nomads’ “First Encounters”

Photo by David Zukauskas This album may be a first encounter, but it’s by no means a first impression. Guitarist
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Essential New Music: Wendy Eisenberg's "Auto"

Essential New Music: Wendy Eisenberg’s “Auto”

When you need to respond quickly, you might let your fingers do the walking. Wendy Eisenberg has the sort of
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Essential New Music: Toho Sara's "Toho Sara"

Essential New Music: Toho Sara’s “Toho Sara”

Time sure can do a number on status and perspective. In 2020, Makoto Kawabata is the ringleader of the celebrated,
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Essential New Music: The Silence's "Electric Meditations"

Essential New Music: The Silence’s “Electric Meditations”

When musicians revise their practices to achieve a new normal post-pandemic, they might want to take notes from Masaki Batoh.
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Essential New Music: Rempis / Parker / Flaten / Cunningham's "Stringers And Struts"

Essential New Music: Rempis / Parker / Flaten / Cunningham’s “Stringers And Struts”

This quartet gathered for the first—and so far only—time on a late summer night when everyone happened to be playing
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Essential New Music: Monoshock's "Runnin’ Ape-Like From The Backwards Superman 1989-1995"

Essential New Music: Monoshock’s “Runnin’ Ape-Like From The Backwards Superman 1989-1995”

Some devotees of two-wheeled navigation will argue that monoshock suspension is superior because it enhances stability. The music of Monoshock
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Essential New Music: Rafael Toral & João Pais Filipe's "Jupiter And Beyond"

Essential New Music: Rafael Toral & João Pais Filipe’s “Jupiter And Beyond”

No living musician relates more to space than Rafael Toral. He’s employed recordings captured by NASA and played music that
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Essential New Music: Mic Harrison And The High Score's "Bright Spot"

Essential New Music: Mic Harrison And The High Score’s “Bright Spot”

Bright Spot could be labeled “bar-band music,” but while that tag is often used pejoratively, it’s the highest of praise
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Essential New Music: David Nance's "Staunch Honey"

Essential New Music: David Nance’s “Staunch Honey”

A voice whispers. Some sticks dance on the rim of a drum. A couple contrasting guitars weave around some Bo
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Essential New Music: Luke Stewart's "Luke Stewart Exposure Quintet"

Essential New Music: Luke Stewart’s “Luke Stewart Exposure Quintet”

The Exposure Series is an annual Chicago event (years with global pandemics excepted) that draws together improvising musicians from the
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Essential New Music: Tetuzi Akiyama's "Thaumaturgy"

Essential New Music: Tetuzi Akiyama’s “Thaumaturgy”

If you had to sum up the relationship between magicians and their audiences in one question, it would be, “Do
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Essential New Music: The Dead C's "Unknowns"

Essential New Music: The Dead C’s “Unknowns”

In disasters lurk opportunities. The Dead C, a trio that’s operated out of various towns on New Zealand’s South Island
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Essential New Music: Julia Reidy's "Vanish"

Essential New Music: Julia Reidy’s “Vanish”

Cristina Marx/Photomusix If you spot a photo of Julia Reidy hefting her acoustic 12-string guitar, you might think she’s a
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