Dan McClenaghan's Best Releases of 2010
These are the CDs that never roamed away from the current listening shelf.
Masterpiece isn't a word to be tossed around lightly. Jessica Williams, with the eighty-eight piano keys and a lifetime of musical immersion, has created one with this recording.
A sublime duo outing with jazz veterans, pianist Keith Jarrett and bassist Charlie Hadena sort of accidental recording, an understated set of familiar standards exploring the themes of love and love lost.
Drummer/band leader Matt Jorgensen continues to push the music forward on this tribute to his late father-in-law, abstract expressionist painter Dale Chisman.
Denny Zeitlin, a jazz Renaissance man who day jobs as a psychiatrist, has offered up one of the finest recordings of his career, a stunningly beautiful solo piano set, recorded live.
Drummer Paul Motian, who came to prominence in the late fifties as a member of pianist Bill Evans' Trio, is still going strong ten years into the new century, with saxophonist Chris Potter and pianist Jason Moran.
Pete Malinverni Trio
A Beautiful Thing
Pete Malinverni has been a top level jazz pianist for a good while, but this highly spontaneous set is a breakout recording effort that lives up to its title and then some.
Pianist Bill Carrothers' tribute to early bop legend, trumpeter Clifford Brown, rollicks and rolls in freewheeling territory, and, in the case of the title tune, slows the pace for an near religious rumination on the music of the died-too-young legend.
German alto saxophonist/bandleader Christian Weidner has crafted a fresh, unique and very modern ensemble sound with his stellar quartet.
Trumpeter Dave Douglas and his "soundtrack band," Keystone, add superb atmosphere to yet another take on the Frankenstein theme.