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The Best Jazz Albums of 2015

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Monday December 14, 2015

From The Boston Globe

The Best Jazz Albums of 2015
By: Jon Garelick

VIJAY IYER TRIO

‘Break Stuff’ Working with bassist Stephan Crump and drummer Marcus Gilmore, pianist-composer (and MacArthur ‘genius’ and Harvard prof) Iyer has fully incorporated electronica and hip-hop into the jazz vocabulary. Despite the album’s odd, layered meters, you couldn’t ask for a more swinging version of Thelonious Monk’s ‘Work,’ or a more delicate, moving solo-piano treatment of Billy Strayhorn’s ‘Blood Count.’

3. THE BAD PLUS JOSHUA REDMAN ‘The Bad Plus Joshua Redman’ No walking-bass swing, no Afro-Latin groove, no blues. So what else is new? Jazz’s foremost unclassifiable, prog-damaged piano trio combined forces with one of its most charismatic saxophone soloists, exploring the trio’s gleaming, knotty structures, informed by Redman’s searing introspection, the occasional pop hook ‘” even an affecting ballad with brushes

5. JOE LOVANO & DAVE DOUGLAS SOUND PRINTS

‘Live at Monterey Jazz Festival’ Saxophonist Lovano and trumpeter Douglas were ostensibly ‘inspired by’ the music of Wayne Shorter. But this is a showcase for the writing of the two leaders, and a great band (with pianist Lawrence Fields, bassist Linda Oh, and drummer Joey Baron), playing with a spontaneous, fluid sense of form. The one Shorter ‘cover’ is a new piece written expressly for this group to perform at the 2013 Monterey Jazz Festival.

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