New Releases: Jazz/Improvised Music (May 2018)

Laura Jurd

New Releases: Jazz/Improvised Music (May 2018)

A round-up of new jazz and improvised music releases

Featured below: Dinosaur, Nik Bärtsch’s Ronin, Coherence Quartet, Ben LaMar Gay and Nubya Garcia. 

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Each week The Journal of Music will be compiling news on new and recent releases in contemporary, classical, jazz, traditional music and more. Please send details of all releases to editor [at]

Dinosaur: Wonder Trail
Edition Records
4 May 2018

Wonder Trail is the second album from trumpet-player Laura Jurd’s band Dinosaur. Though built on the language of jazz, it is placed here within a bedrock of synth-pop and indie-rock.


Nik Bärtsch’s Ronin: Awase
ECM Records
5 May 2018

This album is the first release for six years from the Swiss funk quartet. The titles of both band and album are references to Japanese martial arts, Awase meaning ‘moving together’. It features both new material by Bärtsch and clarinet/sax player Sha, as well as revisits to older material. 


Coherence Quartet: Sagaye
Challenge Records
6 April

Polish smooth jazz ensemble Coherence Quartet are known for their focus on fully improvised music in performance. On Sagaye, their first album on Challenge Records, each track was initially composed by one or two band members, then recorded in a session in one of the band member’s living room, further enhancing the direct and laid-back feel of their improvisations. 


Ben LaMar Gay: Downtown Castles Can Never Block the Sun
International Anthem LLC
4 May 2018

The first album from Ben Lamar Gay is so far on the extreme of experimentalism that it feels at first as if there is no unifying feature. But Chicago jazz is at its heart, if occasionally twisted into new sonic shapes through Gay’s fascination with complex reflections, fractals and forms. The album contains nods to avant garde contemporary classical (for example in ‘Music for 18 Hairdressers: Braids & Fractals’), Brazilian rhythms, R&B and funk. 


Nubya Garcia: When We Are
Nyasha Records
8 March 2018 

Released in March, but worth a belated mention is this innovative EPWhen We Are is a strong statement from new British jazz composer and DJ Nubya Garcia, filled with hip-hop and electronic music rhythmic inflections, and also featuring remixes by two London producers, K15 and Maxwell Owin. 


Please send details of all new releases to editor [at]

Published on 10 May 2018

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