A number of discs by European artists have arrived in my mailbox recently, and I’d like to mention some of the good ones.
The internet really has made the world smaller in some ways, especially in our ability to make friends with people who have similar interests and dissimilar states (or continents) of residence. Austrian trombonist Robert Bachner is one such friend. Robert and I have been sharing CDs of our exploits for some time now, and Robert recently sent me an excellent bunch. All three are by fairly large ensembles. The disc by Robert’s own big band is called Moments of Noise, and it is full of very well played, pretty straight up modern big band stuff. The Vienna Art Orchestra 3 is a three disc set themed around visionaries and dreams. The third disc Robert gave me is Opium by the Flip Philipps/Ed Partyka Dectet. This one is full of interesting colors and resourceful writing. I get a little Gil Evans vibe from it, although there is a lot of other stuff in there too. The Dectet disc also has the coolest cardboard packaging.
Another interesting mailbox surprise has been a disc from Dutch saxophonist Tineke Postma, called A Journey That Matters. At times her playing reminds me a bit of Kenny Garrett. It’s a good disc that is worth exploring.