Here’s a mix covering the best of jazz that came out towards the back end of 2020. One of the best live albums of last year was from Angel Bat Dawid. International Anthem remained one of the leading labels in the world – there were other magical moments from a range of artists. It was also Jazz and Milk Recordings’ 15th anniversary – since 2005 the label, founded by Dusty, offers an experimental playground for international artists that share a passion for organic and soulful dance music and for the occasion, the label presented six exclusive tracks by Steve Spacek, Àbáse, Sam Irl, Feater, Bongani GiveThanks and Moe Fabrik (the club focused collaborative moniker of Wayne Snow, Ziggy Zeitgeist and StyleBoi 92).
Ill Considered reissues showed them to be the real deal in UK spiritual jazz, speaking of which, Matthew Tavares (with or without Leland Whitty) was taking the music to sonic heights, the releases with Mr Bongo are essential listening. The Brahja reissue was much needed. Afrosynth Records compiled an exciting overview of the best new South African jazz – more to come! Dezron Douglas & Brandee Younger stole the lockdown stream show, with their essential renditions at home – their cover of The Creator Has A Master Plan was heavenly, and Tamil Rogeon returned. Klaus Schønning’s masterpiece (Ed. – jazz…? It was apt for this mix, this reissue is a very deep listen, with the solo artist channeling inspiration from his natural surroundings), via Frederiksberg Records and like the music of the Danish new age pioneer – Chicago’s Rob Mazurek Exploding Star Orchestra was an unbeliveably cosmic trip for International Anthem.
Here’s to looking ahead in 2021, more amazing music will no doubt arrive again soon.
Matty – Portrait of Amanda
Matty – SelfPortrait
Brahja – Ineffable Intro
Bokani Dyer Trio – Fezile
Aquiles Navarro & Tcheser Holmes – M.O.N.K.
Brahja – Keepers
Roland Haynes – Second Wave
Ill Considered – Mediation
Angel Bat Dawid & Tha Brothahood – The Wicked Will Not Prevail
Matthew Tavares & Leland Whitty – Blue
Mabuta – Slipstream
Rob Mazurek Exploding Star Orchestra – Autumn Pleiades
Rob Mazurek Exploding Star Orchestra – Parable 3000
Rob Mazurek Exploding Star Orchestra – Galaxy 1000
Matthew Tavares & Leland Whitty – Woah
Dezron Douglas & Brandee Younger – The Creator Has A Master Plan
Angel Bat Dawid & Tha Brothahood – We are Starz
Klaus Schønning – Klittåge
Klaus Schønning – Natskyger
Tamil Rogeon – House No Wheels
Bongani GiveThanks – Indoda (African Repraise – Take One)
Bongani GiveThanks – Indoda (African Repraise)