Reviews that mention Mikel Avery

July 16, 2018

Paul Giallorenzo Trio

Delmark DE 5026

One of the drawbacks of even the so-called Jazz business focusing on what passes for superstars in its narrow milieu is that equally accomplished players aren’t better known. Case in point is Chicago pianist Paul Giallorenzo. A unique and accomplished city fixture associated with stylists like Mars William and Jason Stein, he has recorded several outstanding CDs in various configurations, but his appreciation is mostly local.

Flow, his take on the classic Jazz piano trio legacy is again first rate, but whether it will change his status is problematic. Working with bassist Joshua Abrams, known as leader of the Natural Information Society (NIS) and drummer Mikel Patrick Avery, who also plays in NIS, Giallorenzo exposes nine of his own compositions which juxtapose the unique and unexpected with an unvarying sense of swing and affability, Polymetrical and responsive, at first the pieces seem to be fully in the established night club piano tradition, which includes such Windy City masters as John Young and Jodie Christian. But sly interpolations turn many of them into musical palimpsests, with spry countermelodies peeking from the perimeters. MORE

June 1, 2016

Festival Report

Doek ABC
By Ken Waxman

With many parts of the Netherlands reclaimed from the sea over the centuries, the Dutch have long been adroit recycling, reusing and repurposing. So it’s no surprise that except for the soft-seated Bimhuis, with its magnificent waterfront view, most venues for this year’s Doek ABC Improvisation Festival in Amsterdam, April 29 to May 4, had initially been built as schools, warehouses and even a dungeon. These locations were particularly pertinent for this year’s fest which united local improvisers (A) with visitors from Berlin (B) and Chicago (C). The festival also demonstrated how different musicians repurpose the jazz and improvised traditions. MORE