Blues Pills – Lady in Gold

blues-pills-lady-in-goldBlues Pills return with the long-awaited follow-up to their excellent debut album. But does Lady in Gold live up to the hype? Continue reading

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Matthew E. White – Fresh Blood

Matthew E. White - Fresh BloodAlthough the lazy sunday morning setting of Matthew E. White’s 2013 debut, Big Inner, wasn’t that bad, I openly wondered if it was up to stand the test of time. Alright, I confess I streamed Big Inner throughout that year more than a few times, but alas for him, it didn’t made my end-of-the-year-list. Hereafter I forgot about him until he announced his sophomore record Fresh Blood, which title-wisely made me curious about what our caucasian soul man has been up to the last year. Continue reading

Gregory Porter – Liquid Spirit (2013)

Gregory Porter - Liquid Spirit (2013)Lets face it, Gregory Porter is all about superlatives. With his impressive appearance and magnificent voice Porter is among today’s top jazz vocalists. Since the release of the debut album Water (2010) everything he touched turned into gold. Water was enthusiastically welcomed by the press and received a Grammy nomination in the Best Jazz Vocal Album category. In 2012 his sophomore release Be Good proved to be just as successful as its predecessor. Be Good was a number-one debut on the iTunes Jazz Album Chart and reached top ten positions on various other charts. Moreover Porter was honoured with another Grammy nomination for the single ‘Real Good Hands’. Recently I saw Gregory Porter perform on the North Sea Jazz Festival with the Metropole Orchestra and, to throw in another superlative, it was breathtaking. Porter is on a high, so there´s no surprise a new release in 2013 was on the stocks. Beforehand there was no reason for fans and critics to worry about quality of Liquid Spirit, for Indeed the brand “Gregory Porter“ already stands for high quality jazz and soul. I However am obliged to uphold a critical attitude to all that´s hyped and hip and therefore question if the towering achievements of Porter
don´t lead to a case of the Midas touch. Continue reading

[Live Review] North Sea Jazz 2013, Ahoy Rotterdam

Artposter-NSJF-2013In many regards much about The Netherlands is small, yet this stereotype is not applicable when it comes to the amount of music festivals that are organized during the summertime. Each weekend, starting from June, the concert agenda is packed with festivals ranging from dance to rock, or maybe even better, both! One of the more prominent events is the annual jazz festival North Sea Jazz, that is currently taking place at the moment of writing. Are you new to North Sea Jazz? All right, here’s a very, very short introduction.
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Matthew E. White – Big Inner (2013)

MEWBI

Lately there has been a lot of fuss on the internet about Big Inner by Matthew E. White. In essence it is about this: ‘is it possible for a bespectacled white guy with long hair and a full beard to combine soul, funk, late fifties R&B, psychedelics and folk-gospel….?’ Indeed, there we are, left in a state of total confusion about what some already call ‘the first great album of 2013’. For the archives I have to adjust this last remark. Big Inner was formally released in the United States during the end of summer of 2012. The album was quite successful and appeared on various best of 2012 lists. Although borders don’t seem to matter in the highly interconnected society of today, a global release this January was still necessary for the rest of the world to get acquainted with White’s work. Now this semantic discussion is out of the way it’s time to talk about the man himself and his music. Continue reading