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Monday, August 13, 2018

North4Jazz @ The Globe Jazz Bar, Newcastle - August 12.

Ben Grant (drums); David Keighley (saxes); Adrian Sander (bass guitar).
(Review by Lance).
I could only stay for the first set as I had to be elsewhere but it was long enough for me to establish that North4Jazz was a power trio. Well, maybe not quite 100% power. Sander did his job to perfection but didn't explode which placed the onus on Keighley. A fine saxist, he has the technique, but it's a heavy burden to bear as the sole frontline man when the moment cries out for keys, guitar or another horn to provide contrast and variety. Admittedly, the switch from alto to tenor and back with soprano waiting in the wings as well as the 'Space Oddity' effects conjured from his box of tricks ensured that boredom never set in but I still wanted more.
Maybe it was the 4 in the band's name that suggested there was a missing link - I don't know.
However, having said all that it was still a well-programmed set.
Golden Brown (The Stranglers) lent itself naturally to the Take Five rhythm and Keighley exploited the connection seamlessly.
Nirvana's Teen Spirit continued in the 'can't beat 'em join 'em' mode that Postmodern Jukebox came up with.
Three Shots Fired. an original inspired by the noir movies of the glorious Hollywood past.
This was cinematic without the need for film. The gunshots, the car chase, the slinky dames, the fights, the deaths, they were all portrayed in sound and dynamics, tempo and mood changes. 
Nice one!
In a Sentimental Mood and Pure Imagination. Two ballads, exquisitely played by Keighley at his most lyrical and yet, I still wanted that guitar/piano moment to intervene and make the finale even more conclusive.
Canabalesque and, I think, Take it Easy, finished the first set. Needless to say, Ben Grant who'd kept the power charged throughout was let off the leash.
I'd like to have caught the second set but circumstances decreed...
Lance. 

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