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The Pauseandplay.com Record Roundup

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Andrew Cyrille, Bill Frisell, Wadada Leo Smith

Lebroba

ECM

The title Lebroda is a contracted word that stands for (Le)land, (Bro)oklyn, and (Ba)ltimore, the respective birthplaces of Smith (trumpet), Cyrille (drums), and Frisell (guitar). Here are three monster talents at work, with Cyrille (naturally) leading. The five tracks range from five to 17 minutes in length (shades of the 1970s), and if the sum evokes some of that decade’s masters, it’s probably intentional. On “Pretty Beauty,” shimmering drums, muted mournful brass and delicately plucked strings made me think of Miles Davis’ A Tribute to Jack Johnson. The featured centerpiece is “Turiya,” a meditative tribute to Alice Coltrane.

– Bruce Collier

Mari Gleason

Coffee Kisses

Independent

With a soft, warm voice and mostly acoustic instrumentation, Beachcomber Music Award winner Gleason’s four-song EP is a testament to her ability to craft catchy tunes. Embracing the banner of “indie folk,” Coffee Kisses brews up a swirling feeling of nostalgia and modern shine. It hits the spot like a warm cup of coffee on a too-cold-for-Florida day.

– Nikki Hedrick

Dexter Gordon

Espace Cardin 1977

Elemental Music

Tenor saxophonist Dexter Gordon spent some 14 years living and working in Europe. Not long before he returned to the U.S. for good, he gave a concert at Paris’ Espace Cardin with Al Haig (piano), Pierre Michelot (bass), and Kenny Clarke (drums). This recently released recording offers six tracks. Gordon charms the audience from the start, following a short flourish with a greeting—bon soir—in his deep, purring voice. What follows is classic bebop and hard bop—“Oleo,” “Round Midnight,” A La Modal” and others, with plenty of Gordon’s trademark musical wit and flawless showmanship.

– Bruce Collier

Ithaqua

The Hunt

Independent

This pummeling new local band makes a splash with their introductory three-song EP. It’s the metal equivalent of kicking an angry beehive—once you push play, it comes at you in full-force attack mode. And that’s a mighty fine compliment for any new metal band out to leave a lasting mark.

– Nikki Hedrick

Woody Shaw Quartet

Live in Bremen 1983

Elemental Music

In my humble opinion, Woody Shaw was one of the greatest trumpeters of all time. His death at 44—following the loss of an arm when he was struck by a subway car—stole away one of the most magnificent brass voices that ever existed. Here Shaw fronts a quartet including Mulgrew Miller (piano), Stafford James (bass), and Tony Reedus (drums). The band broke up in 1983, so this live recording represents a kind of swan song. Nine tracks put Shaw dead center, all hard bop brass and brawn, though Miller’s bold, assertive piano provides both framework and counterpoise.

– Bruce Collier

EDITOR’S CHOICE

The Beatles

The Beatles (Super Deluxe Edition)

Capitol

Nothing special here, unless the idea of being a fly on the wall during the recording of one of the most enduring rock ‘n roll albums of all time appeals to you. Mark it fab.

– Chris Manson
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