Pure Nightnoise

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Pure Nightnoise, part of Windham Hill/Legacy's thoughtfully assembled Pure series, is less a best-of than an exercise in elevated listening. Skipping through the Irish jazz outfit's discography from its 1984 debut, Nightnoise, to its sixth CD, A Different Shore, released in 1995; these 16 tracks preserve the most memorable moments from the Billy Oskay era while also pointing up Nightnoise's flair for versatility within a consistently melodic, contemplative soundscape -- check the chamber music-like "Fionnghuala" in comparison with the lullaby that is "Night in That Land." No selections from Nightnoise's 1997 disc, The White Horse Sessions, are included, presumably because its live recordings work against the Pure aesthetic. But the disc amounts to an even-handed distillation anyway; a disc to think by.

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