Acoustic Sounds

October 1st, 2022

Uhuru Afrika---Randy Weston's Forgotten 1960 Masterpiece

The Records You Didn't Know You Needed #12

By: Joseph W. Washek

In 1960, often referred to as “The Year of Africa,” seventeen former French and British colonies in Africa became free, independent nations. In the U.S., in February 1960, the struggle of Black Americans to attain the civil rights which had been promised them by Brown v. Board of Education in 1954, entered a more aggressive, confrontational phase when in Greenville, North Carolina Black students, frustrated and angered by the slow progress in ending segregation,... Read More

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October 1st, 2022

Every Audiophile Needs This Lou Reed Live Album!

Lou Reed talks, and talks, and talks... in glorious binaural sound!

By: Malachi Lui

As I paid $25 for an original US copy of Lou Reed’s 1978 live album Take No Prisoners, my local record shop owner said, “Enjoy it, man, I’ve never seen this record before. Plus it’s a promo.” Indeed it is: not only is there a sticker from Arista denoting it a DJ copy originally loaned for promotional use only, but there’s also a bold red hype sticker reading “SPECIALLY PRICED TWO-RECORD SET—All the raw excitement of Lou Reed-Live,” with quotes from the Chicago... Read More

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October 1st, 2022

Royal Trux, David Briggs, Burn Rock and Roll To a Crisp with Thank You

The Final Album from Legendary Producer and Neil Young Cohort David Briggs is Giant and Perfect

By: Joshua Smith

Neil Hagerty and Jennifer Herrema, the duo that formed Royal Trux in the late '80s, don't look or sound like one of the smartest bands of all time. I saw them open for Pavement at the Roxy Theater in Atlanta in 1997. The two looked like they had escaped from the pages of an R. Crumb comic book. Singer Jennifer Herrema 's long pale arm was wrapped with black leather straps like some kind of profane arm-tefillah. Neal Hagerty had his back toward the... Read More

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October 1st, 2022

The Lush Glory of Charles Lloyd

The West Coast Coltrane's new balladeering trio

By: Fred Kaplan

Charles Lloyd is a force of nature. At 84, he’s not only active but very nearly at the top of his game, blowing blues, ballads, and up-tempo rousers—holding whole notes and raining sheets of sound—with grace, verve, and beauty. He has also been a superb gatherer of talent over the decades. His breakthrough album as a leader, Dream Weaver, featured Keith Jarrett, Cecil McBee, and Jack DeJohnette, in 1966, before any of them were known. In the past decade, unlike some... Read More

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October 1st, 2022

A Guide to Collecting Japanese Imports

the secret grooves of the rising sun have never been so accessible

By: Michael Johnson

Readers on this website might be most familiar with me for my classical music reviews, but the breadth of music I enjoy and collect spans far beyond the purview of Bartok and Brahms. Japanese popular music has long been one of my particular interests. I tracked down my first Dir en grey CDs way back in middle school, and since that time over the last 15 or so years, I’ve been steadily importing physical media from the land of the rising sun. My journey has been long... Read More

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October 1st, 2022

Tangled Up In "Blue Train"

The new reissue is the one to have

By: Michael Fremer

Blue Train is old enough to be on Social Security, yet this reissue (with an additional album of alternative takes) seems to have created a stir probably greater than when it was first released January, 1958. Rudy Van Gelder recorded it in his Hackensack, New Jersey home studio, September, 15th 1957, 65 years ago to the day I’m writing this.Blue Train is the only album Coltrane recorded for Blue Note. He’d signed with Prestige and did this “one off” built upon a... Read More

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October 1st, 2022

Tyshawn Sorey Goes Deep into Jazz

The avant-garde experimental drummer-composer puts his stamp on standards

By: Fred Kaplan

The drummer Tyshawn Sorey has made his mark mainly as an experimental musician, composer, and conductor—a McArthur Genius Grant winner who spans the gamut between contemporary classical and avant-garde jazz, with stints as sideman to the likes of Marilyn Crispell, Roscoe Mitchell, and Anthony Braxton. But lately he’s taken small steps toward the mainstream, playing in Vijay Iyer’s trio and now, with Mesmerism, leading his own trio on an album of standards. Except for... Read More

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