CD Reviews | Music | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Big Hurry
Gets Me Low EP (self-released)

Doused in shimmering guitar work and bass riffs, Big Hurry's Gets Me Low ignites quickly to burn twice as bright for half as long. The short-burst, five-song EP has fiery lead singer Kelly Tobias and arena-ready drummer Dani Buncher unleashing searing performances that continue smolder with each listen. The beautifully anthemic title cut is a keeper, a dynamic indie rocker that effortlessly earns its track-one status. By Patrick Bowman 

Big Hurry CD Release 10 p.m. Fri., Jan. 28. Brillobox, 4104 Penn Ave., Bloomfield. $7. 412-621-4900 or


Paquito D'Rivera
Panamericana Suite (MCG Jazz)

Paquito D'Rivera's writing and arranging glow like the southern sun on this 2007 performance with his 13-member orchestra at Manchester Craftsmen's Guild. His imaginative explorations outside Afro-American jazz borders include the extended title piece and his beautiful "Prayer for Peace." Bask in the fresh colors from Dana Leong's cello, Andy Narell's steel pans, vocalist Brenda Feliciano and harpist Edmar Castaneda -- as well as D'Rivera's superb clarinet playing. By Gordon Spencer


Anthony Braxton & Ben Opie
Duets (Pittsburgh) 2008 (OMP Recordings)

During Anthony Braxton's 2008 visit to Pittsburgh, he and local Ben Opie tackled two of the maestro's compositions in a studio. Each piece lasts an hour, with both men using various reeds to wind through textures that encompass jazz improvisation and chamber-music sonorities. Challenging but fascinating music. By Mike Shanley 


Benito Gonzales
Circles (furthermore)

This straight-ahead session is fronted by Venezuela-born pianist Benito Gonzales, whose fluid right hand enhances eight of his sometimes compelling pieces, and driven by Hill District-born drummer Jeff "Tain" Watts. Intense wailing intricacies by saxophonists Myron Walden, Ron Blake and Azar Lawrence dominate; also admirable is the impressive sturdiness from bassist Christian McBride. By Gordon Spencer