Review: J Hacha De Zola – “Icaro Nouveau”

J Hacha De Zola, a New Jersey-based carnival barker and blender of genres, oft has proven himself adept at conjuring musical spirits. He does it splendidly on his juicy, new LP — Icaro Nouveau, out March 8 – transcending the lazy Tom Waits comparisons to lead a merry band of pranksters through a smorgasbord of…

Review: Graham Costello’s STRATA – “Obelisk”

It’s a calculated and unbelievably addictive kind of descent into madness. Obelisk — the (wait for it) BRILLIANT debut full-length from Scottish sextet Graham Costello’s STRATA, out Feb. 1 – is a tightly wounded knot that finds itself at the intersection of jazz, fusion and math-rock. And it is wondrous to behold. Sounding, at times,…

Review: The Jacob Duncan Quintet – “It’s Alright To Dream”

I just feel cool, like everything’s alright, when I’m listening to Jacob Duncan, don’t you? Well, thankfully for all of us who like feeling like the world’s not completely coming apart at the seams, the talented Louisville saxophonist is back after his debut, The Busker, won over critics with a few tricks up his sleeve and a…

Review: Rob Ford Explorer – S/T

Just wow. The new self-titled LP from Reno’s Rob Ford Explorer, out earlier this month, is a potent gem, a heady amalgamation of jazz fluidity and math-rock specificity, and a roar-from-the-rooftops collection on par with some of the best you’d hear from similar outfits like Hella or American Don-era Don Caballero. This pair is the…

REVIEW: Big Lazy – Don’t Cross Myrtle

Stephen Ulrich and his jazz/rock noir band Big Lazy will take up residency at the renowned Brooklyn joint Barbes starting in a couple short days and there seems like no better reason to take a second glance at the 2014 gem of a record that slipped below our radar here at Popdose, that comeback kid…

PROFILE: Rachel Grimes (2014)

Rachel Grimes knew how to play the piano before she learned to walk. “My dad and grandmother played, so I was always sitting beside them following along, watching and listening in wonder at how they could make that magic,” the composer/pianist told me recently from the home she and her husband, educator Alec Johnson, share…