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 May 2024
Some Recent Releases

Recent Releases

A few words about recent releases / reviews:

Apart from where they are included in articles on this website, I don't have a 'Reviews' section for a number of reasons:


  • I receive so many requests to review recordings it is impossible to include them all.

  • Unlike some publications/blogs, Sandy Brown Jazz is not a funded website and it is not possible to pay reviewers.

  • Reviews tend to be personal opinions, something a reviewer likes might not suit you, or vice versa.

  • It is difficult to capture music in words, so much better to be able to listen and see whether the music interests you.

For these reasons in particular I just include a selection of recent recordings below where I share the notes issued by the musician(s) as an introduction and links to samples so you can 'taste' the music for yourselves. For those who like to read reviews, these, of course, can be checked out on other sites.

Some albums are priced in dollars or other currencies. These are marked ^. There are currency options if you  proceed to order. Recordings are now regularly available on different formats (CD, mp3 downloads, vinyl) or platforms e.g iTunes, Spotify, etc. I am unable to list them all so it is worth checking if you have a favourite platform).

Featured In May 2024


Equal Spirits - Wise And Waiting
(Ubuntu Music) - Released: 26th April 2024

RNoZaka, Nosihe Zulu (vocals, spoken word); Raph Clarkson (trombone, vocals); Yonela Mnana (piano, vocals); Amaeshi Ikechi (double bass, electric bass, vocals);Siphiwe Shiburi (drums, vocals); Chris Batchelor (trumpet, flugelhorn); Mark Lockheart (tenor saxophone); Judy Treggor (flute, piccolo); Sophie Cameron, Naomi Burrell (violin); Alison D’Souza (viola); Zosia Jagodzinska (cello); Phil Merriman (keys, synths, Hammond organ, church organ); Chloe Morgan (soprano voice); Rosie Middleton (alto voice); Michael Solomon Williams (trenor voice); Ben Rowarth (bass voice); Jeremy West (cornetto, tenor cornetto); Sue Addison (alto sackbut, tenor sackbut); Rosie Bergonzi T(tubular bells, handpan); Junior Alli-Balogun (percussion); Yuval ‘Juba’ Wetzler (SPD-SX/electronic drums); Elliot Galvin (samples, electronics).

Equal Spirits Wise and Waiting.jpg

"Shared humanity and connectedness… the beauty of many becoming one." Over the past two decades trombonist-composer Raph Clarkson has proved to be one of the most dynamic figures in British jazz. Leader of the critically acclaimed orchestra, Dissolute Society he has put together a new band, Equal Spirits that makes its debut with a stunning album Wise And Waiting. The music reflects the open-minded and inquisitive approach to making music that has characterised Clarkson’s career to date and draws on many rich sources, from South African spiritual jazz to electronica to dance grooves. Also in the mix are sung choruses and passages of spoken word that showcase the beauty of the Zulu, Xhosa, Sotho, Yoruba, Arabic and English languages. The record is joyously global in nature and universal in outlook. Throughout the album there are important social as well as musical histories. ‘To Joburg’, which has punchy Fela-like horns, evokes a journey to the titular South African city, a major urban centre that has long been marked by migration and family fragmentation, a hot button theme at the moment. ‘Back Again’ has the distinct ghoema rhythmic feel associated with Cape Town. As for ‘Skip’ it is a surprise package, as the gentle pastoral opening gives way to playful brass  ....' (album notes)

Julian Costello Quartet- And All The Birds Were Set Free
(33jazz Records) - Released: 26th April 2024

Julian Costello (saxes); John Turville (piano); Andy Hamill (double bass); Tom Hooper (drums); Special Guest Georgia Mancio (vocals)

Julian Costello And All The Birds Were Set Free 2.jpg

Julian Costello is a London-based saxophonist, composer and teacher. Julian writes music for his quartet and tries to approach life with humour. The Julian Costello Quartet regularly plays venues across London and has toured the UK three times, their new album And All The Birds Were Set Free features vocalist Georgia Mancio on two tracks Why and Sunflowers. (album notes)

Paul Dunmall Quintet with Ed Puddick & The Royal Birmingham Conservatoire Big Band - Soultime Again
(Stoney Lane Records) - Released: 2nd February 2024

Paul Dunmall (tenor/alto saxophone); Percy Pursglove (trumpet); Glen Leach (piano); Dave Kane (bass); Ed Puddick & the RBC Big Band.

Paul Dunmall Quintet Soultime Again.jpg

'Paul Dunmall, the celebrated saxophonist and improvisor, releases his latest recording of original music this February, Soultime Again, featuring his compelling quintet alongside the powerful dynamic of the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire Big Band. Marking his 70th birthday this year, and still very much immersed in a prolific performing, writing and recording career, the title track jumps back to the 1960s and Paul’s teenage years. “Soultime goes back to my earliest times on gigs aged 15 when I was in a soul band playing the music of Otis Redding and the Stax label. I thought everyone might assume I would be playing free improvised music, so I thought I’d give them something to think about by opening with this piece!” .......' (album notes)

Mark Lockheart - Smiling
(Edition Records) - Released: 29th March 2024

Mark Lockheart (tenor, soprano saxophone); Nathaniel Facey (alto saxophone); George Crowley (clarinet); James Allsopp (clarinet ,bass clarinet); Laura Jurd, Mike Soper (trumpets); Jim Rattigan, Anna Drysdale (french horns); Harry Maund - (trombone, bass trombone); Rowland Sutherland (flute, alto flute); John Parricelli (guitars); Tom Herbert (bass guitar, double bass); Dave Smith (drums)

Mark Lockheart Smiling.jpg

'Mark Lockheart, at the forefront of contemporary jazz, unveils his latest album 'Smiling' with a stellar 12 piece ensemble - a vibrant fusion of jazz's sophistication and rock's raw energy - a refreshing antidote to modern-day chaos in the grand tradition of the great jazz rock fusions of the 70s. Following in the footsteps of such British jazz rock pioneers as Nucleus, Mike Gibbs, Isotope and Colosseum , Mark Lockheart’s new project fuses flute (the great Rowland Sutherland) twin sax improvisations ( Empirical’s Nathaniel Facey) with electric guitar (John Parricelli) and a full brass and wind section of top players over rock steady rhythms (bassist Tom Herbert) and ex Robert Plant drummer Dave Smith. Lockheart, in the vanguard of British jazz for four decades, returns with a triumph of sonic optimism on his latest album, blending edginess and rawness into the sophisticated tapestry of his sound. A masterful corrective to the chaos of modern life, the album weaves a narrative capturing the essence of jazz but infusing it with the electric energy of rock, creating a charismatic and exuberant soundscape .........' (album notes)

Small Blue - The Stealthy Moon
(self release) - Released: 10th February 2024

Martin Pyne (drums, composition); David Beebee (piano); Marianne Windham (double bass)

Small Blue The Stealthy Moon.jpg

'During 2023, composer and percussionist Martin Pyne decided it was time to explore a format he hadn’t used before: the classic jazz lineup of piano, bass and drums. Martin enlisted two regular collaborators - pianist David Beebee and bassist Marianne Windham - and formed a new ensemble, Small Blue. Two days of relaxed recording yielded a treasure trove of tunes from which Martin selected the very best for this new album, The Stealthy Moon. Of the twelve tunes on the album, nine have never been recorded before, while three have appeared in different formats. It’s a largely intimate set but ranges far and wide in mood and tempo, taking in heartfelt ballads, mysterious grooves, evocative atmospheres and melodic swing along the way. Pyne says “this music sits at the more straight ahead end of what I do. It was a delight to collaborate on this recording with David and Marianne, wonderful musicians and great friends who played my tunes beautifully.' (album notes)

Jonny Mansfield - Quartet! Live At Pizza Express
(Resonant Postcards) - Released: 12th April 2024

Jonny Mansfield (vibraphone); Will Barry (piano); Will Sach (bass); Luke McCarthy (drums0

Jonny Mansfield Quartet Live At Pizza Express.jpg

'This album was recorded on the 14/01/24 at Pizza Express Soho, London. Quartet! Live at Pizza Express came from the final gig of first tour as a quartet. The compositions were all brought to this lineup after being performed and recorded in different settings and minimal direction was given in terms of approaching the music, other than the requirement for improvisation to tie the pieces together, both logistically and conceptually. Both sets were performed as two uninterrupted bodies of music and this album is a combination of the two sets. the first three tracks - Flicker, Rival and (Organise) The Air in Front of You, are joined by improvisations, which allow for unfiltered interaction that continues into the compositions fuelling a whole new perspective on the material.' (album notes)

Tim Garland - Moment Of Departure
(Ubuntu Music) - Released: 13rd May 2024

Tim Garland (conductor, soprano & tenor saxes, bass clarinet); Gwilym Simcock (piano); Asaf Sirkis (drums & percussion);
Thomas Gould (violin soloist); Yazz Ahmed (flugelhorn on Sub Vita); ‘The Forever Seed’ features: The Strings of The London Studio Orchestra, John Mills (leader); Rob Millett (cimbalom)

Tim Garland Moment Of Departure.jpg

'Seeing a photograph of a base-jumper take that first step off the cliff edge, that ultimately defining moment of departure, I thought about how we dive into the fresh unknown as improvisors, leaving the solid ground of what has been composed, the familiar. For me, it is an intoxicating, vital feeling, demanding a quick-fire aliveness. It is at once the most free and also the most disciplined I can be. The music in this collection is a free-dive into the music-making I find my heart most drawn to, along with fellow travellers on this path, Asaf and Gwilym. I have found the artwork of Esra Kizir Gokcen particularly inspiring, due to the bold use of improvised beginnings and free-flowing forms, underpinned by a rigorous technique. The first half of this recording was inspired by her “Art From Within” book of daily drawings and the “Sail To Hope” collection. Here, she addresses her own migrant story and illuminates the second meaning of “Moment Of Departure” in these detailed, soulfully eclectic paintings. ........' (Tim Garland album notes)


Melissa Aldana - Echoes Of The Inner Prophet
(Blue Note Records) - Released: 5th April 2024

SMelissa Aldana (tenor saxophone); Lage Lund (guitar); Fabian Almazan (piano); Pablo Menares (bass); Kush Abadey (drums).

Melissa Aldana Echoes Of The Inner Prophet.jpg

'Melissa Aldana’s 2nd Blue Note album Echoes Of The Inner Prophet is a musical voyage to explore the depth of the spiritual journey. Co-produced by Aldana and Lage Lund, the album features the tenor saxophonist with Lund on guitar, Fabian Almazan on piano, Pablo Menares on bass, and Kush Abadey on drums. The 8-track set of original compositions includes 6 new pieces by Aldana that seek profound truths through introspection, intuition, and self-reflection including the opening title track which is dedicated to Wayne Shorter.' (album notes)

Fred Hersch - Silent Listening
(ECM Records) - Released: 19th April 2024

Fred Hersch (piano)

Fred Hersch Silent Listening.jpg

Silent, Listening is both a highly individual musical offering and an important contribution to ECM’s line of innovative solo piano recordings. It finds US pianist Fred Hersch, one of jazz’s most outstanding soloists, putting a poetic emphasis on alert, open improvisation while also embracing original compositions and a scattering of standard tunes in his album’s graceful creative arc. Interspersing songs and spontaneously composed pieces, Hersch shapes and sustains a musical atmosphere that he describes as “nocturnal”, an atmosphere of heightened sensitivity to sound. “I still believe in the idea of an album as a complete musical statement from beginning to end,” he says, adding that this is a perspective being lost in an impatient age. “To me, an album has to tell a story.” Silent, Listening builds upon Hersch’s alliance with Manfred Eicher, established with The Song Is You, Fred’s duo album with Italian trumpeter Enrico Rava. “The things that I’ve been happiest with in my life as a musician in jazz,” says Fred, “have been those things that have happened most organically. And in that recording with Enrico, which was made very spontaneously, I recognized that something special was going on. I said afterwards that I’d really like to make a solo album with Manfred as producer, in the same hall – where the acoustics, to my ear, are pretty-near perfect - and on the same piano.” .... (album notes)

Jamie Baum Septet + - What Times Are These
(Sunnyside Records) - Released:  6th April 2024

Jamie Baum (flutes, spoken word); Jonathan Finlayson (trumpet, spoken word); Sam Sadigursky (alto saxophone, clarinet, bass clarinet); Chris Komer (french horn); Brad Shepik (guitar, singing bowls); Luis Perdomo (piano; Fender Rhodes); Ricky Rodriguez (acoustic and electric bass); Jeff Hirshfield (drums) : Guests - Theo Bleckmann (voice (#4); Kokayi (voice (#6); Sara Serpa (voice (#5,7,8); Aubrey Johnson (voice (#3,6,9); Keita Ogawa (percussion (#1,3,10).

Jamie Baum Septet What Times Are These.jpg

'On What Times Are These (Sunnyside), Jamie Baum’s fifth recording with The Jamie Baum Septet+, her flagship ensemble, the acclaimed New York-based flutist-composer presents her first exploration of spoken word and art song. To be specific, seven of Baum’s ten compositions respond to works by a cohort of eminent 20th and 21st century female poets (Adrienne Rich, Marge Piercy, Tracy K. Smith, Lucille Clifton, and Naomi Shihab Nye), interpreted by renowned guest vocalists Theo Bleckmann, Sara Serpa, Aubrey Johnson and KOKAYI. The album follows the critically acclaimed Sunnyside releases In This Life (2013) and Bridges (2018), on which Baum explored the connections between South Asian qawwali, Near Eastern maqam, and Jewish sacred musical traditions, incorporating the scales and rhythms into her vivid harmonic and orchestrative argot. Here again, Baum blends multiple influences, tailoring the improvisational sections to the individualistic tonal personalities of her uniquely configured ensemble of virtuosos ........' (album notes)

Dave Douglas - Gifts
(Greenleaf Music) - Released:   12th April 2024

Dave Douglas (trumpet); James Brandon Lewis (tenor saxophone); Rafiq Bhatia (guitar); Ian Chang (drums).

Dave Douglas Gifts.jpg

'Gifts is about the blessings of life and music that we share with each other. It’s about celebrating the gift of the music we love across generations. These gifts stem from our common humanity, so essential to our survival as a species. The musical arts are a gift that is shared between musicians, and also with listeners as part of a perpetual conversation. Cherishing the music of the past blesses us to make the music of the future. And despite the odds, to go on creating pathways for generations to come. Gifts we give and gifts we receive. That’s where this music is coming from.' (Dave Douglas - album notes)

Andy Milne & Unison - Time Will Tell
(Sunnyside Records) - Released:   26th April 2024

Andy Milne (piano); John Hébert (bass); Clarence Penn (drums); Ingrid Laubrock (tenor saxophone 1, 4, 6, 9); Yoko Reikano Kimura (koto 2. 4, 6, 9)

Andy Milne and Unison Time Will Tell.jpg

'Pianist and composer, Andy Milne is thrilled to present Time Will Tell, a new album recorded with his trio Unison dropping April 26, 2024, on Sunnyside Records. Milne’s latest collaboration with bassist John Hébert and drummer Clarence Penn is a sparkling exploration of identity and destiny, showcasing Milne’s ever-evolving craft. It follows the trio’s The ReMission (2020), winner of Jazz Album of the Year: Group at the 2021 Juno Awards. As with its predecessor, Time Will Tell is Milne’s artistic response to life-changing circumstances. Whereas The ReMission was inspired by his cancer diagnosis, treatment, and recovery, Time Will Tell chronicles his lifelong efforts to uncover his birth family history. Adopted as an infant, his efforts to connect with his birth family proved fruitless – until 2018, when the gift of an DNA test from his wife, singer La Tanya Hall, changed everything. A DNA match led him to his first cousin, Marc, with whom he discovered he shared a mutual friend. Ironically, just as world events collided with the COVID-19 lockdowns, the profound mysteries of his biological family began to rapidly reveal themselves ........' (album notes)

Europe and Elsewhere

Carl Zinsius Project - Five Banana : The Music Of Carla Bley
(self released) - Released: 1st January 2024

Alex Scott (saxophones); Anais Pasanau Miró (clarinets); Willem Suilen (piano); Conrad Noll (bass); Carl Zinsius (drums).

Carl Zinsius Project Five Banana.jpg

"Somebody asks: what kind of music do you listen to? It‘s the music that resonates with you. The one that touches you inside. Be it beautiful, energetic, strange, soft, colourful or anything else. Being able to transport feelings and to reach everybody is what I search for in a composition. Music that stands for itself and transports you inside of it. Carla Bley has achieved this in the course of her career in an incomparable way. I‘m deeply happy to be able to present this group‘s first album with such wonderful musicians and ear-capturing tunes. Thank you for listening! Carl" (album notes)

Simon Lasky Group - For The Dreamers
(Ubuntu Music) - Released: 22nd March 2024

Simon Lasky (piano, keyboards); Tim Garland (soprano sax), Paul Booth (tenor sax), James Suggs (trumpet), Elias Tona (bass), Peter Mongaya (guitars), Jonathan Thomas (drums); Ona K (vocals)

Simon Lasky Group For The Dreamers.jpg

'Simon’s third album as a leader, and his first since relocating to the U.S., features his recently formed Tampa Bay based Jazz Octet, with three front line horns and female vocals. There are special guest appearances by leading U.K. jazz artists, including Tim Garland (soprano sax) and Paul Booth (tenor sax) and, for the first time, Simon’s imaginative arrangements appear alongside his original and expansive compositions. (album notes)'

Circles 44 - In The Grip
(Aut Records) - Released: 31st January 2024

Achille Succi (bass clarinet, contrabass clarinet); Massimiliano Amatruda (piano); Joseph Circelli (guitar, effects, synth); Andrea Grillini (drums).

Circles 44 In The Grip.jpg

"In the grip" is the second album by Circles 44 published by Aut Records after their 2020 debut album “Cratere”. Enriched by the presence of Achille Succi on bass clarinet and double bass clarinet, the album presents exclusively original compositions, arranged in a choral work that enhances the collective nature of the project active since 2017. The rhythmic research, the harmonic-melodic solutions and the electronic incursions supported by constant interplay trace an ever-evolving path through different compositional and improvisational approaches. The jazz language in all its forms and facets is the glue that keeps theme together as a whole.' (album notes)

Sam Anning - Earthen
(Earshift Music) - Released:  5th April 2024

Mat Jodrell (trumpet); Carl Mackey (alto saxophone); Julien Wilson (tenor saxophone, electronics); Andrea Keller (piano, wurlitzer); Theo Carbo (electric and acoustic guitars); Sam Anning (double bass, compositions); Kyrie Anderson (drums)

Sam Anning Earthen.jpg

Based in Melbourne, Australia, Samm Anning says: "I acknowledge the traditional owners and custodians of the lands on which this recording was made and pay my respects to Indigenous Elders past, present and emerging. Sovereignty has never been ceded. It always was and always will be, Aboriginal land. Thank you to Mat, Carl, Julien, Andrea, Theo, and Kyrie for lending their immense talents to interpreting and performing the music. To Nikki and Brodie for their impeccable vision. Hadyn and Dave and for their expert ears. Tash for her soup, snacks, vibe, inspiration, support, encouragement, and understanding. Special thanks to Sasha Wilson and Max Jodrell for bringing the vibe to the studio. This album is dedicated to Archie Roach." (album notes)


The Bobby Wellins Quartet - What Was Happening

(Jazz In Britain Records) - Released: 27th January 2024 [2 CDs]

Bobby Wellins (tenor sax); Pete Jacobsen (piano, electric piano, organ); Adrian Kendon (bass); Spike Wells (drums)

Bobby Wellins Quartet What Was Happening.jpg

'On download, streaming and CD for the first time ever, the Bobby Wellins Quartet albums – Jubilation and Dreams Are Free - expanded with bonus tracks. The original albums, and the extra tracks, were all recorded by the same quartet in 1978 or 1979. Released in partnership with Spike Wells, the drummer in the quartet, who provided the extra recordings from his own tape archive, and wrote the booklet notes as well as providing many previously unseen photographs, Fiona Wellins, Bobby’s daughter, and the bassist in the quartet Adrian Kendon, who also produced the original recordings for the vinyl-only Vortex label. The download includes printable CD artwork and the booklet notes. Also available as a double CD. The tracks on this album have been transferred from the two Bobby Wellins Quartet vinyl albums or from Spike Wells’ personal reel tape archive. The transfers and the audio mastering are the collective effort of Paul Dutnall, Danny Jarvis, Keith Bikel, Chris Martyn and John Thurlow under the overall direction of Spike. Booklet notes by Spike Wells.' (album notes)

Art Tatum - Jewels In The Treasure Box : The 1953 Chicago Blue Note Jazz Club Recordings

(Resonance Records) - Released: 26th April 2024 [3 CDs]

Art Tatum (piano); Slam Stewart (bass); Everett Barksdale (guitar)

Art Tatum Jewels In The Treasure Box.jpg

'.. a previously unissued 3-CD collection of recordings from jazz icon and virtuosic pianist, Art Tatum, captured live at the Blue Note jazz club in Chicago in March of 1953 with guitarist Everett Barksdale and bassist Slam Stewart. These recordings were transferred from the original tape reels and mastered CD by engineer Matthew Lutthans (who also worked on Resonance's Grammy-nominated 2019 Nat King Cole release Hittin' the Ramp). Containing a whopping nearly 3 hours of never-before-heard Art Tatum captured in an intimate setting at the height of his powers with his longtime trio, the deluxe 3-CD set includes rare photos and memorabilia from Herman Leonard, Bob Parent and the Holzfeind family archives (owners of the Blue Note jazz club in Chicago); plus liner notes from Columbia University professor and author, Brent Hayes Edwards; as well as statements from Ahmad Jamal, Sonny Rollins, Monty Alexander, ELEW, Spike Wilner, Johnny O'Neal, Michael Weiss and Terry Gibbs..' (album notes)

Mal Waldron & Steve Lacy - The Mighty Warriors

(Elemental Music) - Released: 26th April 2024 [2 CDs]

Steve Lacy (soprano sax); Mal Waldron (piano); Reggie Workman (bass); Andrew Cyrille (drums)

Mal Waldron Steve Lacy The Mighty Warriors.jpg

'Never-before-released Mal Waldron & Steve Lacy 1995 concert in Belgium. ncludes 28-page booklet with previously unpublished photos from the actual concert by Hugo Peeters; essays by jazz author Adam Shatz and producer Zev Feldman, plus testimonies by Andrew Cyrille, Reggie Workman, Jane Bunnett, l David Liebman, Vijay Iyer, Evan Parker, David Virelles, and Hiromi Waldron' (album notes)

Ethel Waters - His Eye Is On The Sparrow

(Jasmine Records) - Released:  12th April 2024

Ethel Waters (vocals)

Ethel Waters His Eye Is On The Sparrow.jpg

'Ethel Waters was one of the greatest African-American stars of the 20th Century! She introduced such classic hit songs as Am I Blue, There’ll Be Some Changes Made, Dinah, Sweet Georgia Brown, I Got Rhythm, Three Little Words and Tiger Rag. Major star of Broadway: “As Thousands Cheer,” “At Home Abroad,” “Mamba’s Daughters,” “Rhapsody in Black.” Hollywood films include: “Cairo,” “Pinky,” “The Member of the Wedding,” and “The Sound and the Fury.” First African-American performer to star in her own television series – “Beulah.” Dozens of other television guest star appearances. All of her recordings have been issued on LP or CD except for our current release of her inspirational tracks recorded in stereo in 1959. Our set is filled with some of the most powerful sacred pieces of all time: “Just a Closer Walk With Thee”, “Nobody Knows the Trouble I See”, “Deep River" (album notes)

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