What’s new in the jazz world this January 2023? The year got off to a bang with some killer new releases which we discovered from both the Jazzfuel community and via some of our favourite magazines and online publications…
Looking for some brand new listening? Here’s our pick of some of the best new releases this January…
As always, we’ve included Bandcamp links where possible, so you can buy directly from the artist or independent label.
Kari Kirkland – if (when you go)
Canadian-born California-based singer Kari Kirkland teams up with four-time Grammy nominated producer and pianist Shelly Berg for the release of her sophomore album. Breathing fresh life into a range of classic songs, the all-star line-up is brought together by lush arrangements and immaculate production at one of Los Angeles’ premiere recording venues.
“Kari Kirkland knows how to touch your heart with her emotional deliveries. There is heart and soul in her singing that comes from living life to its fullest.” – Dee Dee McNeil, Musical Memoirs
Little North – Wide Open
Following two critically acclaimed albums in the space of just two years, contemporary Danish piano trio Little North continue their quest with Wide Open. An abstract and introspective continuation of their musical narrative, the music is written and performed with openness, curiosity for the sound of the room and with a sensitivity for what the next moment may bring.
“Listening to this trio as the world transitions from broken 2022 to a hopefully brighter and better 2023 gives a certain hope for the future.” – Jan Granlie, Salt Peanuts
Edgar van Asselt – The Gentle Insult
The Gentle Insult focuses on nine new compositions from Edgar van Asselt that fuse jazz, latin, pop, classical, absurdism and VST’s together. Edgar van Asselt plays keys with the support of a stellar rhythm section: Jeroen Vierdag (Caro Emerald) on bass and Jorge Rossy (Joe Lovano, Kurt Rosenwinkel) on drums and vibes.
As heard on Ruth Fisher’s Full Circle show on JazzFM (UK)
Abbie Finn – On Pink Lane
“On Pink Lane” is the third album release from the trio led by British drummer and composer Abbie Finn. It places the focus on Finn’s compositions exclusively and takes its title from the street in Newcastle that housed the old Jazz Café, the venue where the trio first played together at that now renowned jam session.
“crisp, accurate and propulsive, hard driving yet full of nuance and detail” – Ian Mann, The Jazz Mann
Teus Nobel – Human First
Dutch trumpeter Teus Nobel, highly regarded for his jazz sensibility and musical versatility, presents his first-ever suite “Human First”. While reading Herbie Hancock’s biography for the second time, a quote from the legendary jazzman hit him: “I realised that I am human first, musician second.”
“absolutely a celebration; a 27-minute magnum opus that serves as a deeply personal, revelatory experience that imparts Nobel’s joy of prioritising his role as “a husband, a father, a brother, a son, and a friend” above all else” – Imran Mirza, Blue In Green
Lakecia Benjamin – Phoenix
Phoenix is the highly-anticipated, expansive new album in the musical evolution of alto saxophonist and composer Lakecia Benjamin, due out January 27, 2023 via Whirlwind Recordings.
The album was produced by the multi-Grammy-award winning Terri Lyne Carrington and features a star-studded line up of specially curated guests Dianne Reeves, Georgia Anne Muldrow, Patrice Rushen, Sonia Sanchez, Angela Davis and Wayne Shorter.
“Earthen and defiant, Benjamin carries the old masters in her bones… not just homages to the past but beacons to the future.” – Mike Jurkovic, All About Jazz
Jason Moran – From the Dancehall to the Battlefield
From the Dancehall to the Battlefield connects to one of the original Big Bangs in Black Music, James Reese Europe. In the early 20th century, James Reese Europe and others firmly understood that Black culture has a history, sound, and a code. This brought Black pride onto the stage and into the world.
“What Jason Moran and his 10-piece band make of this biography is unparalleled” – Verhoovens Jazz
Tyler Mitchell Feat. Marshall Allen – Sun Ra’s Journey
A deeply soulful journey into the music of Sun Ra, led by his long-time bassist Tyler Mitchell and featuring jazz legend Marshall Allen on saxophone.
“a joyous, carefree romp…” – Mike Jurkovic, All About Jazz
TRIO Nerveux – The Violet Club
‘The Violet Club’ is the second album by TRIO Nerveux featuring an array of original compositions inspired by the Cold War, its atmospheres, weapons, intrigue, deceptions and entanglements.
Michael League and Bill Laurence – Where You Wish You Were
Snarky Puppy founder, multi-instrumentalist and Grammy winner Michael League and crossover piano icon Bill Laurance take us to an imaginary place full of beauty, peace and energy. “Where you wish you were” is the name of their first duo album which was released on ACT on January 27.
“an album that’s stripped down to a much more intimate scale, yet still has all the melodic power of their larger works” – Jazzwise
Andrew Cyrille – Music Delivery / Percussion
Music Delivery/Percussion is a solo album by legendary drummer and percussionist Andrew Cyrille. The 11 tracks were recorded on January 17 and 18, 2022, at Sound on Sound Recording, in Montclair, New Jersey, in the United States, and the album will be released on January 20, 2023, by Intakt Records.
“the impossible rhythms in this impossible arrangement seem to come so easily to Cyrille” – Best of Jazz
Thanks for reading!