Jazz Spectrum - Best of 2012
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Jazz Spectrum - Best of 2012

Best of 2012

Sometimes I imagine jazz musicians as a flock of scavengers in reverse, flying over the whole vast history of the music to sort among its many diverse bodies and dispensing new life to work once thought dead.  A couple of decades ago, Gary Giddins used the phrase “neo-classical eclecticism” to describe the then-current mood of jazz.  That was apt then, and remains so: so much is going on in the music these days that its seems as linear as a Mobius Strip.  And we all remember how cool that was to discovery.  Here are 50 releases from the year – the odds are excellent that you’ll find some things to surprise and engage you. (* denotes a special favorite.)

John Abercrombie - Within a Song

JD Allen - The Matador and the Bull

Omer Avital - Suite of the East

Tim Berne - Snake Oil

David Binney - Barefooted Town

Theo Bleckmann - Hello Earth

Neneh Cherry & The Thing - The Cherry Thing

Anat Cohen – Claroscuro

* Ravi Coltrane - Spirit Fiction

Chick Corea/Paul Motian/Eddie Gomez - Further Explorations

* Marilyn Crispell - Play Braxton

Jack DeJohnette - Sound Travels

* Dave Douglas - Be Still

Scott Dubois - Landscape Scripture

Marty Ehrlich Rites Quartet - Frog Leg Logic

Johannes Enders - Mondvogel

Orrin Evans - Flip the Script

Amina Figarova – Twelve

Michael Formanek – Small Places

Bill Frisell - Floratone II

Mary Halvorson - Bending Bridges

Billy Hart - All Our Reasons

* Fred Hersch - Alive at the Vanguard

* Vijay Iyer Trio - Accelerando

Keith Jarrett - Sleeper

* Darius Jones Quartet - Book of Mae'bul

Frank Kimbrough Trio - Live at Kitano

Lee Konitz – Enfants Terribles: Live at the Blue Note

* Steve Lehman - Dialect Fluorescent

Living by Lanterns - Old Myth/New Science

Brad Mehldau Trio - Ode

Brad Mehldau -Where Do You Start

Ron Miles - Quiver

Joe Morris – Altitude

Linda Oh – Initial Here

Jimmy Owens - The Monk Project

Jeff Parker Trio - Bright Light in Winter

* William Parker - Essence of Ellington

Jeremy Pelt - Soul

* Sam Rivers - Reunion

Jenny Scheinman - Mischief & Mayhem

* Wadada Leo Smith - Ten Freedom Summers

Esbjorn Swenson – 301

* Henry Threadgill Zooid – Tomorrow Sunny/The Revelry, Spp

Ryan Truesdell - Centennial

Matt Ulery - By A little Light

Piet Verbist – Zybomatik

David Virelles - Continuum

Kenny Wheeler Big Band - The Long Waiting  

Miguel Zenon  & Laurent Coq - Rayuela




  • Jazz Spectrum - Best of 2012
  • Jazz Spectrum - Best of 2012