A top 10 list is very hard to do as there is so much more out there to enjoy. I tried to keep it as local as possible, because here in Montreal and the Quebec area we have so many talents and wonderful jazz artist men and women.

EMIE R ROUSSEL TRIO / Quantum

Rewarded with the 2015 Felix for Jazz album of the Year at l’ADISQ,

Rimouski based pianist & composer Emie R Roussel delivers a unique and creative jazz style once again on her third album “Quantum”. In May 2014, the jazz trio was named “Radio-Canada Jazz Revelation of 2014-15” which propelled them in touring the globe. This album has remarkable melodies.
9 pieces with 4 interludes mixed within the pieces, a great vibe from beginning to end.

 

ROBI BOTOS / Movin’ Forward

Hungarian-Canadian jazz pianist Robi Botos is surely moving on with this great album. With a dream-team rhythm section of Jeff ‘Tain’ Watts on drums, Robert Hurst on bass and great Canadian saxophonist Seamus Blake on saxophone, Robi Botos is showing us, how he wants his jazz to shine. Movin’ Forward features a concoction of originals, Roma-influenced songs as well as straight-ahead swing and bebop composition, also some jazz standards. Highly agreeable!

(pas de video de l’album)

 

ANNIE DOMINIQUE QUINTET / Tout Autour

Saxophonist Annie Dominique brings out all of her shades here with an album full of her compositions. She is also a flutist and clarinettist to discover and worth listening to. She formed her quintet with elite jazzmen from Montreal. The sound is a gracious blend of modern jazz with a glowing intensity, leaving room for softer, more introspective moments. Immensely enjoyable!

 

KIRK MAC DONALD / Vista Obscura

Juno award winning Kirk MacDonald has maintained his integrity as one of Canada’s leading saxophonists and composer for over 25 years. Vista Obscura is an exceptional jazz project that reflects his musical growth and direction. With seven new fabulous compositions, he also throws in “Naima’ from Coltrane and one beautiful original from legendary pianist Harold Mabern, who just happens to be the pianist on this great album! Absolutely mind blowing!

 

HICHEM KHALFA / Histoires sans Mots

Trumpeter Hichem Khalfa was born in France and luckily for us he came to study here at McGill. He fraternized with the local jazz artists, which resulted in a fine collaboration with well-known Montreal musicians for his first excellent album. His way of playing the trumpet is like no other youngster. He is very hip with his compositions. “Histoire sans mots” tells personal stories and is a treat from the fist blow ‘til the end!

 

ORCHESTRE NATIONAL DE JAZZ DE MONTRÉAL / Dans la forêt de ma mémoire

If you like large ensembles and orchestral jazz, you’re in for a real treat! A six-part suite for the 16-member orchestra recorded live with singer Anne Schaefer and trumpeter Ingrid Jensen as featured soloists with Christine Jensen conducting. Pianist and composer Marianne Trudel wrote these phenomenal melodies. The work has strong and hearty themes with vivid harmonies featuring brass and reed textures that leave you wanting more.

 

THOMAS CARBOU / Other Colors of Hekátê

Frenchman Thomas Carbou now residing in Montreal has an eight string guitar that makes his sound unique. With his 14th album, the guitarist wanted to please himself by inviting saxophonist extraordinaire David Binney and rhythm master drummer Jim Black. Notice there is no bass player, that’s because he does the work with the extra stings on his guitar.  These are all Carbou’s compositions mixed with loops & electronics. A fantastic blend of jazz, traditional & world music, that sends you on a journey.

 

5 FOR TRIO / Garder La Tension

This young jazz trio from Quebec City is just out of this world. If you like a bit of progressive rock in your jazz, well this band will delight you. They always have a great video to complement a song. This is their 2nd album, fine compositions that keep your attention locked in. Waiting impatiently for a new video.
This video is from ( Witness & Reactions ) the first album, also excellent!

 

KENNY WHELLER / Songs For Quintet

This precious album was recorded at Abbey Road nine months before Kenny Wheller passed away (September 2014).
There is some sweet flugelhorn from the octogenarian and particularly fine support from the classy quintet. The CD comes with two impressive booklets with photographs of the quintet and of Wheeler’s time with ECM. Songs for Quintet is an excellent testament to a Canadian-born star who did so much for jazz in the UK.

 

SNARKY PUPPY & METROPOLE ORKEST / Sylva

The Texan collective, now New York-based Snarky Puppy has gone from the best-kept secret to one of the most cherished names in instrumental music. The “pups” are still considered an underground bunch. Their most recent album SYLVA, a live collaboration with the Dutch large ensemble Metropole Orkest, topped Billboard Jazz, Billboard Contemporary Jazz, Billboard Heatseeker, and iTunes Jazz charts. Sylva marks the first time the band has joined forces with an orchestra, what a treat!
SYLVA is nominated for a 2016 Grammy Award

 

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About The Author

Colette Schryburt
Collaborator - RREVERB
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Colette’s passion for jazz is deeply rooted. Enthral led by a vast spectrum that brings diversity and discoveries from old school to the up and coming scene, she’s always on the lookout for new artists and musicians’ collaborations. Transmitting her love of jazz via her Monday night radio show Coco Jazz on CKVL 100,1 FM. With playlists loaded of jazz, electro jazz, funk, and Latin grooves, there’s something for everyone.
Columnist for www.sortiesjazznights.com, she reports Coco’s local jazz gig of the week. Jazz is unifying. Jazz is freedom.