AZIZA album reviewed

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Monday October 17, 2016

From The Ottawa Citizen

AZIZA CD reviewed
By: Peter Hum

At the rarefied level of jazz where Dave Holland, Chris Potter, Lionel Loueke and Eric Harland make music, nearly every project that they become involved in is effectively an all-star band.

Think of bassist Holland, saxophonist Potter and guitarist Loueke on tour years ago with Herbie Hancock. Then think of the various quartets in recent years that featured Holland and Harland driving the music along — the Monterey Quartet that about a decade ago had pianist Gonzalo Rubalcaba and Potter, followed by the Overtone Quartet that included pianist Jason Moran and Potter, followed by the band Prism, that swapped in pianist Craig Taborn and guitarist Kevin Eubanks.

Those alliances are part of the backstory behind the group Aziza — Holland, Potter, Loueke and Harland — which put out its eponymous debut CD last Friday. You could also consider that Holland, who has put out Aziza on his own label, has had Potter in his various bands for nearly 20 years, and that the bassist has played with Harland for nearly a decade.

All this to say that the Holland, Potter, and Harland are by now tremendously comfortable making music together. And judging by the music on Aziza, Loueke had no problems inserting himself into their tight company when the band formed last year and played a run of European summer jazz festivals.

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