Irish rock group Aslan were tipped at one point to follow in the footsteps of U2 in conquering America. Sadly, Aslan imploded in 1988 on the very day their debut single was due to be released stateside, but regrouped half a decade later and forged a legacy that has seen them become one of Ireland's most popular and enduring acts. Inspired by David Bowie, the Smiths, and the Rolling Stones, Aslan crashed onto the Irish music scene in 1986 with the release of debut single "This Is," an entirely self-funded effort that earned them a record deal with EMI Ireland and would go on to become the longest playlisted track in the history of Irish radio. Following their mid-'90s re-formation, Aslan's music became softer and more melodically mature, evoking the Beatles, Stevie Wonder, and contemporaries Oasis, and their domestic profile continued to rise through the '90s, establishing them as one of the country's most successful touring acts.
Features 24 bit remastering and comes with a mini-description. Really beautiful work from the team of Red Rodney and Ira Sullivan – hardly the sort of stuff we might have heard from the players a decade or two before – and a sophisticated batch of tunes that has them stretching out in rich musical directions! There's little of the boppish roots of either player here – and instead, the album mostly features inspiring jazz compositions from Garry Dial – the pianist in the group, and a real genius with color, tone, and timing. Dial's tunes dominate most of the record, and they really set the group on a great footing – horn trading between Rodney's trumpet and Sullivan's soprano, flute, and flugelhorn – supported with complicated changes from the core rhythm trio.
One of the most versatile of all East Coast contemporary jazz guitarists, Chuck Loeb was equally inspired to play screaming fusion as he was to write hip radio-ready smooth jazz hits and sweet candlelit gems. This nice collection definitely focuses on the latter, highlighting his low-key acoustic and electric playing on songs culled from his seven Shanachie releases from 1996-2005.
Features 24 bit remastering and comes with a mini-description. Alto sax player, arranger, and composer Buster Smith recorded sparingly during his career and this seven-track set, recorded in a single session on June 7, 1959 and released by Atlantic Records a month or two later, was the only album Smith did as a bandleader. It's a low key, pleasant affair featuring five original Smith compositions, including the lightly swinging "Buster's Tune" and the odd, wonderfully disjointed "King Alcohol," as well as versions of Kurt Weill's "September Song" and Will Hudson's "Organ Grinder's Swing."
Reissue with the latest DSD remastering. Comes with liner notes. Beautiful work from trumpeter Terumasa Hino – an early 80s date that was issued in the US, but one that's got as much bold power and freewheeling soul as his Japanese releases from a decade before! The album's surprisingly open for the time – not in the slicker mode that Columbia was hitting as they crossed over some of their 70s fusion players, but in spacious territory that has Hino blowing cornet, in larger arrangements from keyboardist Masabumi Kikuchi and Gil Evans – the latter of whom seems to contribute a strong sense of color and tone to the album! The lineup is great, too – and features both Herbie Hancock and Kenny Kirkland on keyboards, Steve Grossman on reeds, Harvey Mason and Lenny White on drums, Anthony Jackson on bass, and Airto on percussion.