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.
‘…cued by Komunyakaa’s use of multiple voices, Evans assembled discrete bands for each piece, including no less than 11 different lead singers, plus Michael Edwards-Stevens reading some poems as spoken word with musical accompaniment.’
‘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.’
The third album, Kinetic Conversations, is an extraordinary and rare find, a heady 100%-proof concoction distilled once and only in the off-hours of a March afternoon at the University of California, San Diego, in 1986. Let loose in the lab were two electric and eclectic and eccentric maestri: the Visiting Professor, Australian Keith Humble, on piano and electronics and Bunsen burner, and the Resident Professor, American Bertram Turetzky, on mortar and pestle and contrabass.
‘…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.
Evans’ bold vision has allowed her to remain faithful to Komunyakaa’s poems and to Parker’s spirit, while doing so firmly with her own voice. Her finely-crafted composition has given the vocalists and soloists excellent vehicles within which they can pay their individual tributes to Parker, perhaps best summed up in the memorable ‘Testimony Coda’, with Bernie McGann’s last notes floating gently in the air.
“…Sydney’s a small town and I was just wanting to make something nice.”
‘…catchy themes, tight arrangements and some excellent solos.’
‘… a mood of striking conviviality.’