RecommNeds | Mehliana, Badbadnotgood & More

You can stream this week's RecommNeds and previous featured releases through these handy RDIO and Spotify playlists as part of the JamBase channels for each.

Jazz is the new punk rock is the new jazz…

Mehliana : Taming the Dragon

Take the names Mehldau and Guiliana and mash them together and you’ve got Mehliana, a name that evokes something different and bigger than the sum of its parts. Take the piano of the former and the drumming of the latter and you have something that’s unexpectedly different and bigger than the sum of its parts. The music on Taming the Dragon is not your father’s Brad Mehldau; these songs drowned piano trio jazz in the bathtub. The album starts with a narration of a weird dream interspersed by a futuristic funk groove. From there it’s a totally electric and electrifying set of keys-and-drums duos: part Electric Miles, part kapow!

Spotify: Mehliana – Taming the Dragon
Rhapsody: Mehliana – Taming the Dragon

Badbadnotgood : III

Another group starting from a jazz base that evolves into a vanilla-chocolate swirl is Badbadnotgood, from Toronto. Their new album, III, showcases their piano-trio-meets-hip-hop sound, with nine well-honed tracks. The formula seems simple, but it’s all in the execution, and BBNG takes the individual flavors of their influences and mixes them into a unique sound. Also, it’s pretty damn groovy. One of my favorite “jazz” albums of the year so far. Enjoy!

Spotify: Badbadnotgood – Can't Leave The Night
Rhapsody: Badbadnotgood – Can't Leave The Night

Free Nelson MandoomJazz : Double EP

Sticking to this week’s theme, I’ll wrap up this week’s picks with Free Nelson Mandoomjazz from Edinburgh. Their new album is actually two EP’s, The Shape of DoomJazz to Come and Saxophone Giganticus, whose titles play on two classic, groundbreaking jazz albums from Ornette Coleman and Sonny Rollins. Maybe it’s a little presumptuous to put themselves in such company, but I don’t think it’s too serious. The music, though? That’s some serious business: heavy, slow-moving “doom jazz” – jazz meets metal -- with traditional sax blowing matching some seriously fuzzed out electric bass. To give you an idea on where these guys are coming from, the final track is a cover of “Black Sabbath”…and it’s pretty darn good.

Spotify: Free Nelson MandoomJazz – Double EP
Rhapsody: Free Nelson MandoomJazz – Double EP

Written By: Aaron Stein

[Published on: 6/4/14]

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