PositivePopMatters... noteworthy in that it manages to be primarily about Carlos the composer, the musician, the vanguard of electronic music. While her gender identity is certainly written about in great length, it\'s never approached as a morbid curiosity. If anything, it\'s used primarily to chronicle the challenges Carlos encountered around society\'s preconceptions and prejudices toward transgendered people ... Sewell writes exhaustively and in great detail of the work Carlos continued to produce ... Carlos\'s insistence on essentially making her music nearly impossible to hear in the 21st century poses an obviously frustrating problem for readers of this fascinating biography. The music is so well-documented and lovingly described, that readers who have not previously purchased her music in the now-deleted physical formats are not able to call up the albums on streaming devices can be maddening. That virtually no new interviews have been conducted in the writing of the book is actually less of a problem. Sewell\'s research is impeccable, and although the lack of fresh quotes can occasionally result in a few dry stretches, this is often essentially an entertaining, often revelatory work, truly befitting a legend and a trailblazer.
RavePopMatters[Chinen\'s] new book, Playing Changes: Jazz for the New Century, is a loud, clear refutation of the misguided opinion that \'jazz is dead,\' preserved in amber like an archeological artifact ... For the most part, Playing Changes acts as something of a selected index of contemporary jazz artists, with many chapters serving double duty as both a feature piece on a specific musician as well as how their work impacts the overall genre ... Chinen\'s elegant, evocative writing—a mesmerizing staple of this essential book ... demands the reader\'s time and attention ... Like the best nonfiction, Playing Changes will motivate jazz diehards and neophytes alike to discover what\'s out there and what\'s on the horizon.