Listen!

By JIM MACNIE  |  December 23, 2008

FRANCISCO MELA | CIRIO | HALF NOTE
A telling portrait of an exquisite night on an NYC bandstand. The Cuban drummer and his pals (Jason Moran, Mark Turner) deliver a series of inspired kinetics.

RUDRESH MAHANTHAPPA | KINSMEN | PI
The Brooklyn saxophonist's music has long referenced his Indian heritage, but this date was equal parts thoughtful and playful.

GUILLERMO KLEIN | FILTROS | SUNNYSIDE
The Argentine pianist leads a big band that doesn't do what a big band usually does. So surprise is at every corner.

BILL CARROTHERS | HOME ROW | PIROUET
A hard-swinging mainstream piano lingo tricked out with just enough left-of-center maneuvers to give this trio date something utterly singular.

MARY HALVORSON | DRAGON'S HEAD | FIREHOUSE 12
The young guitarist reached a new level of eloquence in this trio date that made you consider every passage, whether suave or stormy, on its own.

SONNY ROLLINS | ROAD SHOWS, VOL. 1 | EMERCY
A handful of live tracks from the master with solos that boast enough muscle and brains to rouse the backing ensemble whenever it flags.

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