Quiet Revolution (Newvelle NV005LP)
Again, the sound! This may be Newvelle Records’ finest example of vinyl audio verité yet. All the instruments—Ben Allison’s double bass, Ted Nash’s alto saxophone or clarinet and Steve Cardenas nylon-string or steel-string acoustic guitar—have extraordinary presence. It is as though the air in the room is being jostled about by the real devices rather than a pair of speakers. Half the songs on the album are by Jim Hall, so this is not an album to assault you aurally. Rather it is about nuanced interplay, beautiful sounds and svelte grooves. That’s not to say some vigour is not wheeled out when required, but the fact that no amplified instrument is involved lends an organic quality to the collective sound that is only magnified by the superb recording quality.