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Bebop Spoken There

Alan Luff: “The general view is that Ella’s songbook recordings are the supreme exemplars of sophistication, fine diction and creative voice in the wide field of popular music.” – (Jazz Journal May 2017).

Steve Voce: “Most of us have been crashed into by cretins who walk along the road absorbed in the screens of their mobile phones.” – (Jazz Journal May 2017).

Number 22!

Bebop Spoken Here is currently listed at number 22 in the WORLD JAZZ BLOG Rankings!

Today Saturday May 27

Afternoon
Harambee Pasadia - See RH Column.
Evening
Harambee Pasadia - See RH Column.
Alan Law (solo piano) - Cherry Tree, 9 Osborne Rd., Jesmond, Newcastle NE22 2AE. 7:30pm. No cover charge.
Jazz Night - Jesmond Library, St. George's Tce., Jesmond, Newcastle NE2 2DL. 7:30pm. Collection at door. Feat. members of Newcastle Uni. Jazz Orchestra.
Half Hand Hoodoo Blues Band - Billy Bootleggers, 28 Nelson St., Newcastle NE1 5AN. 9pm. Free.
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To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Friday, August 22, 2014

CD Review: Blue-Eyed Hawk – Under the Moon

Lauren Kinsella (voice), Alex Roth (guitar, effects, synth, voice), Laura Jurd (trumpet, synth, voice), Corrie Dick (drums, percussion, harmonium, piano, voice).
(Review by Hugh Cochrane)
Blue-Eyed Hawk are a London-based band who take their name from a line in a W.B. Yeats poem Under the Moon. This their debut album, titled after the same poem.
The album is a record sellers nightmare, as it defies classification by genre. While there are certainly elements of jazz in what is offered, it would probably not be out of place any of the conventional categories.
Writing is shared between all four musicians, each contributing in more or less equal measure across the album. Kinsella and Jurd also wrote some of the lyrics with acknowledgements of inspiration to W.B. Yeats, Seamus Heaney, and Armand Silvestre.
In the studio, the electronic artistry of Leafcutter John and production skills of Tom Herbert  enhanced the spectrum of sounds that were recorded over 4 days in April in Giant Wafer Studios – deep in the heart of the mid Wales countryside.
The first track Oyster Trails commences with electronic effects worthy of the BBC Radiophonic workshop and Dr Who. The melody, provided by Kinsella's vocals and Jurd's trumpet gradually develops.
Somewhere is way, way Over the Rainbow, man, as you have never heard it before and is punctuated with a heavy guitar riff that would not be out of place on my metal-loving, teenage daughter's ipod. This track then segues through a recording of birdsong (Bluebirds – geddit?) into the balladic Aurora Sam, stripped down to acoustic basics.
Spiderton is an upbeat number with a jaunty, rhythmic feel driven by the percussive input of Corrie Dick. O Do Not Love Too Long slows things down again with long, haunting chords underneath , supported by almost skeletal percussion and overlain with beautiful drawn out trumpet from Jurd.
The minimalist Reflections in the Spiral keeps things in a contemplative groove before things (perhaps predictably) hot up for Living in the Fast Lane.
Intro (For Fathers) puts us back in a more reflective mood before the rhythmic and beautiful For Tom and Everything. Try to Turn Back is primarily basic vocals and piano, where the purity of Kinsella's vocal line is perhaps best appreciated. Valediction does what it says on the tin and closes the show.
All in all then, this is not jazz, but certainly has something of interest for the die hard jazzer. This is perhaps likely to appeal to a much wider audience than the customary jazz crowd. It is, as the record company website has it, “a genre defying and boundless approach to music making”.
There is a prominent quote at the head of the record company publicity:
So brilliant. Everyone in the room was spellbound – BBC Radio 3. I would wager a fiver this would be Jez on 3 (Jazz on 3 – hosted by Jez Nelson), this album is seriously melodic compared with some of the usual fare.
Under the Moon is released by Edition Records on September 15. Catalogue No. EDN1054
Blue-Eyed Hawk will be on tour in the Autumn of 2014 and play Splinter at The Bridge, Newcastle upon Tyne on October 5.
Hugh C.

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Bebop Spoken Here -- Here, being the north-east of England -- centred in the blues heartland of Newcastle and reaching down to the Tees Delta and looking upwards to the Land of the Kilt.
Not a very original title, I know; not even an accurate one as my taste, whilst centred around the music of Bird and Diz, extends in many directions and I listen to everything from King Oliver to Chick Corea and beyond. Not forgetting the Great American Songbook the contents of which has provided the inspiration for much great jazz and quality popular singing for round about a century.
The idea of this blog is for you to share your thoughts and pass on your comments on discs, gigs, jazz - music in general. If you've been to a gig/concert or heard a CD that knocked you sideways please share your views with us. Tell us about your favourites, your memories, your dislikes.
Lance (Who wishes it to be known that he is not responsible for postings other than his own and that he's not always responsible for them.)
Contact: lanceliddle@gmail.com I look forward to hearing from you.

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