‘…The Acronym Orchestra and many of their contemporaries joyfully celebrate and integrate and build upon the musical language of, and beyond, the jazz tradition – blues, gospel, jump, New Orleans, and even further back to Africa and the Middle East and both West and Eastern Europe.’
Rhythm. Heat. Lines. Movement. Energy. Since 2010’s ‘The Singularity’, The Sam Bates Trio have naturally progressed into the force of nature that we hear here.
Made up of guitarist Cameron Henderson, double-bassist Elsen Price and drummer Tully Ryan, The Trio are one of the current young bands that make me jump for joy. Genre-hopping is admirably rife in the modern jazz world, but done as it is here on their debut – Dubious Blues Trio – so unselfconsciously and with a real blues wildness, is a buzz.
‘Dan Sheehan, whose conception and compositions (largely) are the reason for Infinite Ape, moves like the ocean behind all this – his playing, whether acoustic or Rhodes, is as big as the room, whether it be a sprinkling of notes or a killer riff or – yeah! – big, big chords.’
‘…cross-cultural mash-up worked beautifully across the entire suite – a testimony to Robertson’s smart writing, deep research and even deeper emotional connection to the music.’
Network of Lines is a work of ethereal and pure loveliness – albeit one with a red-blooded heart.
In the lead-up to Baecastuff’s performance of Mutiny Music on January 29 2104 at Sydney’s 505, John Hardaker asked Rick a few questions about this remarkable suite of music.
In his liner notes (notes worth the price of admission in themselves), NYC based pianist Barney McAll – no slouch in the ‘daring’ department himself – says, ‘(Keller) has been blending memories, sonic pictures, Bartók, Shorter and an immaculate classical technique to ensure her trajectory could never disappoint. Andrea is a serious inventor.’
Being a visual person, images often swim though my head while listening to music. This image appealed instantly as a perfect expression of the Trio’s music and especially of ishs’ playing – calm and settled on the surface, held in place by a spiritual gravity, its smooth face belieing the many cross currents interweaving and shaping the dark waters below.
It is a jazz format that is one of the most satisfying of all within the canon, and they do it so well. So well, in fact, that they deserve your ears. They already have mine.