Robert Glasper Experiment genre hops on ‘ArtScience’

The Robert Glasper Experiment hoists a jazz sail on "ArtScience" for a spirited cruise on seas of soul, dance, funk and pop. Recorded in New Orleans in two weeks, the band

Meat Loaf, Steinman reunite on ‘Braver Than We Are’

The cover of "Braver Than We Are" bears two names, those of rock belter Meat Loaf and songwriter Jim Steinman. It's a rare writer who gets his name front and center,

Better than ever days for Incognito

One may ask how a band achieves longevity, especially when members have come, gone and come back again. For an answer, you need look no further than Bluey, the co-founder

‘Schmilco’ is meditation on loss, loneliness

Wilco’s “Schmilco” finds the Chicago sextet in a mostly acoustic mood, musing on happiness, loneliness, isolation and loss. Not exactly arena rock anthem material. And that should hearten even the most hardened

Joanna Connor’s fierce blues on ‘Six String Stories’

Six String Stories” is her first studio album in 14 years, but thousands of gigs in the interim have only enriched Chicago-based Joanna Connor’s fierce guitar skills and expressive, bluesy

Amos Lee hones sweet spot he found a long time ago

Amos Lee continues to deliver the kind of laid-back, soulful sound that has set his work apart for years. He just keeps getting better at it. On his latest album, "Spirit," Lee

Hvorostovsky sings of ‘War, Peace, Love and Sorrow’

The opera world was shocked by news last year that Dmitri Hvorostovsky had brain cancer. But the beloved Russian baritone with the velvety voice and phenomenal breath control carried on,

Wild Beasts live up to name on potent ‘Boy King’

Wild Beasts live up to their name on the potent "Boy King," 10 electric exposures of the English art rockers' raw carnal desires. Led by Haden Thorpe's sometimes ghostly vocals and

Joe Lovano 2005 live set spotlights Hank Jones

With this summer's Newport Jazz Festival about to begin, Joe Lovano has pulled from the vaults his 2005 performance there with a quartet that included the late pianist Hank Jones,

Candi Staton blends gospel and dance on new album

Candi Staton blends gospel themes and messages of redemption and caution with dance music, funk and soul on “It’s Time to Be Free,” revisiting earlier hits and perhaps creating new

Aaron Neville shakes a funk feather on ‘Apache’

Aaron Neville picks up the pace and delves into songwriting on “Apache,” a lively album meshing New Orleans R&B with Brooklyn funk. Ably guided by Soulive’s Eric Krasno and backed by

Sara Watkins branches out

Sara Watkins describes her latest venture as “a breakup album with myself,” but it seems like there might have been someone else involved. The songs on “Young in All the Wrong

Tribute to Dennis Brown hails peerless reggae singer

We Remember Dennis Brown" is a much-deserved tribute to one of reggae's top crooners, a vocal marvel whose music was widely acclaimed in Jamaica and Britain and merits even broader

Avett Brothers’ exquisite ‘True Sadness’ mixes new, classic

A quiet, deep sigh opens the loveliest tune on The Avett Brothers' terrific new album, "True Sadness." It might reflect the wistful tale of a romance Seth Avett pines for in

Neil Young goes green on hybrid ‘Earth’

Longtime environmentalist Neil Young takes a hybrid approach on "Earth," a double disc compilation of live tracks loosely related to sharing our planet with the animal kingdom. The sounds of honking

Kristofferson hits 80 with new album of beloved hits

The title had some Kris Kristofferson fans fearing his 2013 album "Feeling Mortal" was his last. Now, entering his ninth decade, Kristofferson is feeling sentimental, with a new offering that's

The groove’s still the thing for Paul Simon

No '60s folkie has written more great music for dancing than Paul Simon, and at 74 he still wants us to feel the beat. "Stranger to Stranger" showcases Rhymin' Paul's

Bob Dylan returns to standards on ‘Fallen Angels’

After his own songs have been covered by hundreds of artists over the past half century, Bob Dylan is turning the tables for a second time in as many years. On