Reviews that mention Newman Taylor-Baker
March 2, 2016
The Conduct of Jazz
Thirsty Ear THI 57211
Relative Pitch RPR 1040
Straightforward in his improvising and composing, it’s fairly easy to understand how Michael Bisio has become bassist of choice for many of Jazz’s most exploratory players. He has had a long-time relationship with pianist Matthew Shipp as well as being part of straightforward ensembles with the likes of saxophonist Louie Belogenis and saxophonist/trumpeter Joe McPhee.
Although straightforward is straight as in a straight line, straightforward isn’t straight as in straight-ahead. For instance on the disc as part of Shipp’s trio with drummer Newman Taylor Baker; and with his newly constituted Accortet, featuring cornetist Kirk Knuffke, drummer Michael Wimberly and accordionist Art Bailey, Bisio’s creativity allows for angling unexpected strategies within these performances. But like a competitive long-distance swimmer who makes sure a guiding boat is always nearby, he ensures that tunes maintain a determined form and never drift off into cacophony. MORE
November 6, 2010
Prayer for Peace
TUM CD 018
By Ken Waxman
Prayer for Peace may be violinist Billy Bang’s most fully realized session, since it balances his influences with his present-day concerns. With the nearly 20-minute title track a major anti-war statement, other tunes pay homage to his childhood in Spanish Harlem, 1930s jazz fiddler Stuff Smith and Bang’s erstwhile employer Sun Ra.
With trumpeter James Zollar channeling Jonah Jones’ mellow, muted tone, pianist Andy Bemkey key clipping, a Major Holley-like rhythmic bass break from Todd Nicholson, and Bang’s curlicue stops and melodic extensions, the Smith-tribute, “Only Time will Tell” reaches the same level of enjoyable swing in which Smith specialized. Like the work of the older violinist as well, it entertains without pandering. Additionally, a number such as “Chan Chan”, which adds the vibrating friction promulgated by percussionists Milton Cardona and Joe Gonzalez, dazzles with shuffle bowing and spiccato runs from Bang plus brassy, plunger work from the trumpeter, who often also works in Latin-jazz settings. MORE