A Blog Supreme: Ten Great Moments From Jazz Recordings In 2009

January 1, 2010

In his first post of the new decade, NPR jazz blogger Patrick Jarenwattananon, lamenting his lack of participation in the recently released Village Voice Jazz Critics Poll, writes about his ten favorite moments from the many jazz recordings he’s heard in 2009, including Darcy James Argue’s Infernal Machines (New Amsterdam) and Fay Victor’s The FreeSong Suite (Greene Avenue Music).


Spinner: Top 10 Jazz Albums Of 2009

December 31, 2009

Photo by Dylan Morris

Tad Hendrickson’s Top 10 list is now posted at Spinner.com, and we’re pleased to report that the Joe Morris Quartet’s Today On Earth (AUM Fidelity) came out on top. Darcy James Argue’s Infernal Machines (New Amsterdam) placed sixth.

“Here with his old quartet of saxophonist Jim Hobbs, bassist Timo Shanko and drummer Luther Gray,” Hendrickson writes, “Morris is at his most eloquent. He writes for these guys as gracefully as he does for himself, conjuring heartfelt melodies. The group responds with revelatory musical voyages and strong interplay.”

“Oftentimes, I don’t really dig the mix of indie rock and jazz,” he continues in his review of Infernal Machines, “but the big-band compositions here are stunning, right up there with Maria Schneider. The guy is making his debut here with a seriously hot record.”


More Year-End Lists: Darcy James Argue

December 28, 2009

We were away much of last week dreaming of dancing sugar plums and rockin’ around the Christmas tree, but the year-end lists featuring Darcy James Argue’s Infernal Machines (New Amsterdam) continued to flow as freely as egg nog in our rare but enjoyable absence.

Here’s a quick summary to get you caught up:

1. The AMN Top 5 of 2009 at AvantMusicNews.com

2. Michael J. West’s Top 10 Jazz Albums of 2009 in the Washington City Paper

3. Jacob Teichroew’s Best Jazz Albums of 2009 at jazz.about.com

“Argue’s pieces are haunting and eruptive, and his dextrous band is capable of thrilling maneuvers.”

4. Peter Hum’s 10 Best Jazz CDs of the 2000’s at Jazzblog.ca

“Years in the making, this disc by the Vancouver-raised, New York-based composer and bandleader points the way ahead for big bands. Argue’s music is fresh and intoxicating, unfurling dramatic surprises and conventional beauties while tapping indie rock and ambient music for references.”


Darcy James Argue’s Infernal Machines One Of Time Out New York’s Best Albums Of 2009

December 21, 2009

Time Out New York‘s Music Editor Steve Smith chose Darcy James Argue’s Infernal Machines (New Amsterdam) as the only jazz record on his 10 best albums of 2009 list, published in the latest issue.

“Composer and bandleader Argue’s highly anticipated debut offered an expansive, inclusive new jazz that’s open to all,” Smith wrote.

The magazine’s five-star review of Infernal Machines, written by David R. Adler for the May 7th issue, can be found here.


Darius Jones Trio’s Man’ish Boy One Of The Boston Globe’s Top 10 Jazz Albums For 2009

December 21, 2009

The Boston Globe‘s Living Editor, and resident jazz reviewer, Steve Greenlee chose the Darius Jones Trio’s Man’ish Boy (AUM Fidelity) as one of his Top 10 Jazz Albums for 2009 in Sunday’s paper.

“The young saxophonist plays both raucously and sweetly,” Greenlee noted, “and he puts every genre at his disposal, from blues to swing to free improvisation.”


Jason Crane’s Top 10 Jazz CDs Of 2009

December 9, 2009

We’re incredibly pleased to report that The Jazz Session‘s Jason Crane has chosen three of our clients’ releases for his Top 10 list for 2009.

The popular interviewer/podcast host, and columnist for PopDose.com, selected the Fay Victor Ensemble’s The FreeSong Suite (Greene Avenue Music) as his top pick for the year, followed by the Darius Jones Trio’s Man’ish Boy (AUM Fidelity) and The Fully Celebrated’s Drunk on the Blood of the Holy Ones (AUM Fidelity) at numbers 3 and 4, respectively.

Crane, who published his list in the format of his ballot for the Village Voice‘s Jazz Critics Poll, also chose Ms. Victor’s record as Best Vocal Album and Jones’ record as Best Debut CD.


NPR Music: Take Five’s Top 10 Jazz Records Of 2009

December 7, 2009


The weekly NPR Music column Take Five reached out to ten of its contributors to ask each for his/her favorite jazz album of 2009.

The resulting Top 10 list, posted yesterday, features Darcy James Argue‘s Infernal Machines, which continues to build its case as one of the most acclaimed jazz releases of the year.

“Argue makes his Secret Society debut with Infernal Machines,” writes Josh Jackson, host of WBGO’s The Checkout, “and he introduces a band that pulses like a steam locomotive. His compositions don’t punk the idea of jazz orchestra. Instead, they expand its source code to include organized sound from today and references beyond the time when large ensembles were de facto. Elements of classical minimalism, anthemic rock, and Ellingtonia meet a cast of improvisers who make this jazz in every way. It would be a shame to keep this kind of originality a secret.”