REVIEW: PopMatters on Secular Psalms

Great to see two reviews in PopMatters for the new Dave Douglas album Secular Psalms!

In his 8/10 review, John Garratt says,

In a recording career stretching almost 30 years, it’s just another reminder that Douglas can still cobble together whatever elements he wants and have it all come out sounding artful. If Secular Psalms doesn’t end up standing out as one of his best recordings, Douglas fans can rest assured that it will stand out as one of his most accomplished. There is a great deal to unpack here between conception, composition, and distance recording, and you’re all the richer for it.

You can read the full review here. And a week later, Will Layman names the album to his list of “Best New Jazz and Creative Music” for April 2022. He says:

The result is close to genre-less, except that it has the harmonic shade of Douglas himself, who delivers on a particular promise of being true to himself in what alley he explores. “Hermits and Pilgrims” may begin with an eerie combination of pump organ and cello, but it soon morphs into a very Douglas-ian triple-meter pattern for guitar, tuba, trumpet, and trap set, setting up improvisation for Reid, the leader, and piano—and then a composed ending in common time that complements but doesn’t repeat the initial theme. There are parts of the suite featuring electronics, and some rapturous songs such as “Ah Moon” put it all together: atmosphere, poetry in French, electric guitar, and piano crisscrossing atop toms and cymbals.

You can read the full review here, along with reviews of new records from Myra Melford, Larry Goldings, Roxy Coss and much more.

Secular Psalms is available on CD and digital via Bandcamp and other outlets here.