Tuesday, March 27, 2012

New records out on the Dazzle Jazz Label!

The restaurant and lounge, "Dazzle" in Denver has a great jazz record label, which you can check out here. Several of my friends and fellow Colorado musicians have put out new records on the label.

*EDIT* (Adding Dazzle Jazzfest)

Dazzle Recordings will be hosting a two day festival in April, 2012 that will feature the amazing recording artists that record under the Dazzle Recordings record label name. The Festival will take place at Dazzle Jazz (930 Lincoln in Denver, CO).

Saturday, April 21

1:45 - 2:30 - East High School Jazz Combo (Dining Room)

2:30 – 3:05 – Colorado Conservatory for the Jazz Arts Messengers (Lounge)

3:15 – 4:05 – Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra (Dining Room)

4:10 – 5 – Shawn Costantino Quintet (Lounge)

5:05 – 5:55 – Julie Monley (Dining Room)

6:05 – 6:55 – Denver School of the Arts Workshop Orchestra (Lounge)

7:00 – 7:50 – John Lake and Shirley (Dining Room)

7:55 – 8:45 – The Teaching (Dining Room)

8:55 – 9:45 – Josh Quinlan "Mountain Time Standards" Quintet (Dining Room)

9:55 – 10:45 – Greg Harris Vibe Quintet (Dining Room)

After party in the Lounge with the Funky Fresh Trio (11 – 1:30)


Sunday, April 22

1:45 – 2:35 - Carmen Sandim Sextet (Dining Room)

2:40 – 3:30 – Steve Denny Trio (Lounge)

3:35 – 4:25 – Adam Revell and Essence Rider (Dining Room)

4:30 – 5:20 – Ben Haughland Sextet (Lounge)

5:25 – 6:15 – Peter Sommer Quartet (Dining Room)

6:20 – 7:30 – Matt Smiley Quartet Art (Lounge)

7:40 – 8:30 – Dave Devine Relay (Lounge)

8:35 – 9:50 – Ninth and Lincoln (Dining Room)

After party in the lounge with Manuel Lopez Latin Jazz Trio (10 pm)

You can check out more details at either here or here.


Steve Kovalcheck on guitar
Ben Markley on piano
Marty Kenney on bass
Chris Smith on drums

From the cdbaby website:

"For fans of well-played guitar, piano, bass and drums quartet, the new release from Raincheck will indeed be in heavy rotation! This fine ensemble - led by guitarist Steve Kovalcheck and pianist Ben Markley - will delight the listener with their solid and exciting brand of straight-ahead jazz. This group has garnered much attention for their tight group interplay and consistent sound, and this record attests the continuance of the group in their endeavor. The band swings hard out of the gate on Markley's composition "Right There." The energy level and band communication remain high - as noticed immediately on the track "M.O." - which features the fine writing and incredible guitar playing of Kovalcheck. Besides the high energy, a well-balanced program contributes to the success of this album. Markley's lyrical piano introduction on his composition "My Home" is not only beautiful, but a wonderful change of pace after his inspired playing on "Shadow Valley." Throughout the entire album, the musical connection of bassist Marty Kenney and drummer Chris Smith creates an undercurrent of energy that results in some enthralling moments of interaction that never take away from the feel and swing of the band. These musicians are preservers of the swinging hard bop music of the 1960s. Of course they bring their own compositions and interpretations to the fold, but the fire of their musical heroes burns bright! This is a swinging, musical album that is sure to please.

I personally finished listening to the album today, after starting it yesterday. I highly recommend it, there are great compositions, varied grooves and feels, incredible solos, all with a real sense of a group cohesion and unique sound. BUY THIS RECORD!

Josh Quinlan on saxophones
John Lake on trumpet
Ben Markley on piano
Kells Nollenberger on bass
Ed Breazeale on drums

You can go to Josh's website here. The cdbaby site has the simple quote that "The music of Mountain Time Standards reflects on the beauty of living in the Rocky Mountain region of the United States."

This record I listened to when it first came out, and I really enjoyed it! The interplay between the two horns immediately hit my ear, the great interaction with the rhythm section also, and some really great compositions! Not like the typical jazz record of "inhead" solos and "outhead," the compositions really take the listener to different places, and different moods. This is a beautiful record, so BUY THE MUSIC!!

Josh has played on my CD release concert for Quartet Art, helped me get on the Dazzle label, and plays as one of the rotating soloists at "Ace Gillett's" my house jazz gig in Fort Collins, CO. He's a killer player, and will be playing on another Quartet Art gig at Dazzle, for a recording artist weekend coming up, April 21st and 22nd.

Ben Haugland on piano
Dick Oatts on alto saxophone
Greg Johnson on tenor saxophone
Adam Bartczak on trombone
Jay Anderson on bass
Chris Smith on drums

This record just came out this week. I haven't heard it yet, but Jay Anderson borrowed my bass for the session, so I was in the studio when they recorded it. The band sounded incredible, the saxophones really had a great blend and interplay. I play with Ben every week at my house jazz gig, so I know his charts are impeccable, and the arranging and writing is really top notch. There is also the mix of older established musicians like Oatts and Anderson, with these younger virtuosic musicians who really stepped up to the plate on this. I can't wait to listen to the record, and am very happy for all involved, it's awesome. BUY THE MUSIC, DO IT!!!

John Lake on trumpet
Serafin Sanchez on saxophones and abelton live
Andrew Moorehead on keyboards
Paul McDaniel on electric bass
Ed Breazeale on drums

I haven't heard this record yet, and am not 100 percent sure if it is out yet, but I think it is coming out soon, if not already available. John is a great trumpet player, he's on the Josh Quinlan record mentioned above, and this group sounds like it'd be amazing! I'll have to edit this post when I get a hold of the record and hear it, but I guarantee it is one bad ass album, so go out there, contact John Lake, and BUY IT ASAP!!!! I'll put more info in here once I've heard it.

EDIT: (adding this record to the list)
Steve Denny on piano
Marty Kenney on bass
Ben Waters on drums

Steve gave me a copy of the record last weekend whilest both on a straight ahead jazz gig at Ace Gillett's. I have listened to it twice already, and it is a GREAT record of a trio of folks I've had the pleasure to know since I moved to Colorado. All these guys are incredible in their own right, and together they form this powerful triforce of jazz individuals that are taking over! Steve's compositions on the record go through a real transformation from the melon collie "Finn's Sick" to the upbeat "Stacie," and running through humor, swing, and few quirks along the way. You're in for a great musical ride with these guys, BUY THE ALBUM!!!

That's all the promo for now with my posts. I've got two album reviews coming up soon to be on the lookout for, and more Malaby posts, so stayed tuned to the blog!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Bryan Beninghove's Hangmen

Bryan Beninghove’s album “Beninghove’s Hangmen”

Rick Parker – Trombone

Kellen Harrison – Bass

Dane Johnson – Guitar

Eyal Maoz - Guitar

Shawn Baltazor – Drums

Bryan Beninghove – Sax and compositions



Track 1: Jack Miller

I’m already stuck with a John Zorn Naked City Film Noir feel, with the guess that at any time now it all may end up falling apart into madness. The electric guitar and drums stick out in the mix as elements that might bring the craziness, bring the noise. It’s almost tongue and cheek, while also sounding syrupy and dark. It’s jazz in a haunted house!

Track 2: Xopo

I hate to keep adding the Zorn references, but this reminds me of a mix of Electric Masada and the Secret Chiefs, with it’s electric and odd meter groove, mixed with “ethnic” sounding scales (for lack of a better term). I’m already amazed at how large the group sounds, with only a sextet. The guitar is very present, but never overpowering, really nasty tone that fits this band perfectly! Some of the horn play towards the end of the track, takes me back to the “Italian Instabile Orchestra,” probably just the unique sound of trombone and saxophone. Now we are going even more metal for the outhead, I’m really digging this record!

Track 3: Rave Melodique

I go back to my tongue and cheek observation earlier, it sounds Parisian, and then slightly off, like a warped visit to a French surrealist theatre, and the absinthe is coming in short waves. It still seems on the verge of breaking totally out, but stays on the fine edge of inside-ish.

Track 4: Tarantino (a tarantella)

I dig the play on words with the title, I always image a tarantella as a quick piece, because on string instruments it means the hand is supposed to look like a spider. The spider imagery works nonetheless with this piece. It’s so many things currently, kind of a whirlwind adventure of sound. This could be part of the Beetlejuice soundtrack! The pieces on the album all sound very unique to one another, while all having the same kind of compositional cohesiveness, which is this dark and slightly humorous sound, with a bit of quirk thrown in for good measure. The writing on here is really incredible, how it can make it all balance out in this musical statement of a record. This seems to have the most “classical” sounding melodic statements, and with the marching snare drum it gives it a certain air. Nice, the end of the tune did speed up and break apart for a second, into a dirge like ending.

Track 5: Reject’s Lament

It’s night, starting to rain, you’re on a street by yourself, a pretty dame walks under a light and you catch a glimpse of her…. Man this screams of film noir! Great writing, nice harmonies with the two horns, and the guitar adding that Marc Ribot touch. The saxophonist is coming in and out of some klezmer sounding ideas, segueing into a nice guitar solo. We’re working with multiple guitar parts, and the sounds coming out are perfect, they way it was mixed to have the different sounds and the noise coming together like it is. I see there is a later track titled “film sketch 1,” but I think this has a lot of potential for film scoring music (and of course is great stand alone music!).

Track 6: The Puppetmaster

This one starts off nasty and heavy, and there is more of an old school gangster sound. The mix of the guitar and its effects works really well with the sound of this group, I keep listening over to hear what the guitar is doing under all of this, and I really like it! The trombone with mute adds a good sound to this tune, keeping it nasty! The outhead is a little more whimsical, as this tune winds down, like a freaky merry go round.

Track 7: Sushi Tango

This band is great at playing different genres, as we’re now digging into a gypsy tango vibe. I’m still listening for the “sushi.” Woah, maybe now we’re in sushi land, as the tempo picked up, and it’s very island themed now! That came out of nowhere, yet still fits the tune well. It started as a delicate tune, and with all the intent and heavier dynamics and feel, it still seems to remain that in the end. Back to the islander theme to end the piece!

Track 8: H Bomb

Dick Dale surf rock licks, but heavy and dark and some odd meter thrown in for good measure. Regardless of the accompaniment or solos on any of the tunes, they always stay true to the feel and style of the tune. Never does the solo seem to overshadow the composition, it is more of a musical element that adds to the overall piece. Some more sick guitar layers, that sounds like a robot having a seizure in the background, gaining more and more feedback and volume. H Bomb on the beach is my guess, with the surfer appeal that the tune has. Awesome!

Track 9: Quatro Loko

Spanish four loko, I dig, thinking high energy and some odd meter. The mean part came in for only a second, maybe that’s finding you’ve run out of four loko, and you NEED to have more. About one minute into the track and I can’t help but think of Marc Ribot and his Cuban band. This piece proves how tight this band is, more intricate parts, quick transitions, killing group!

Track 10: Hangmen’s Waltz

I’m expecting more darkness to come out of this. So far it’s a short, simple and beautiful tune, beautiful with this cloud hanging over it. All through composed start to finish, and elegant track, possibly a precursor to madness (let’s see what follows this up).

Track 11: Roadhouse

I heard the beginning as a chain saw, before the bluesy shuffle tune came in. The guitar plays an important role here, filling out the sound, where normally you might hear an organ in the mix. There’s some howls, some growls, some wolf sounds, and it’s getting to a point of running out of steam, and might break down completely. The theme slowed, and picked up again, and quiets down a little, and picking up even more. This is sounding Mingus inspired, better get hit in yo soul music, like a preacher in the middle of a bar, savin’ some souls. One of my favorites so far I think!

Track 12: Film Sketch 1

I like this guitar effects heavy intro, lots of non-traditional sounding things going on, and with the quick cut like that, it’s like early zeppelin or pink floyd using the studio as an instrument. Into a beautiful trombone feature, and some bowed bass coming in from the background. I wonder if this is written for an actual film, or the story behind this piece. The saxophone comes in and takes off the melody from the trombone, with some nice dialogue in the guitar. It’s good to hear the bass with the melody, this track seems to feature everyone (except the drums) coming out to the forefront. This is a weighted piece that I would like to know what the film element is, but can only guess.

This is a great record from the group Beninghove’s Hangmen. You should BUY THIS ALBUM, good music to fit your film noir needs. Perfect driving music, put on a scary black and white silent film and listen to it, or party music! Do it, buy the music, you won’t regret it!!

Next up on the blog, more Tony Malaby articles and transcriptions, and more CD reviews coming your way!