15 Great Albums You Didn't Hear in 2016

Rolling Stone critics choose LPs that flew under the radar

Peter Evans Quintet, 'Genesis'
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Peter Evans Quintet, 'Genesis'

Peter Evans is the rare virtuoso player who's willing to take real musical risks. The New York trumpeter boasts deadly classical and jazz chops – in 2014, as part of the group Mostly Other People Do the Killing, he participated in a freakishly painstaking full-album cover of Miles Davis' Kind of Blue. However in his own projects, he prizes batshit maximalism as much as technical dazzlement. Genesis is the latest document of his electroacoustic quintet, a band that – thanks in large part to the real-time electronic processing of Sam Pluta – can sound like a bebop combo blasted by a sci-fi scrambler ray. On the four-part "Genesis/Schismogenesis," one of two lengthy suites that make up the majority of this 90-minute-plus behemoth, lockstep prog-jazz intermingles with wild textural tangents, such as in the third movement, when pianist Ron Stabinsky's solo turns into a burbling robot chorus. During Genesis' many similarly surreal moments, Evans and his crew make musical implosion sound positively ecstatic. Hank Shteamer

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