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Friday, October 09, 2009

ACV @ The Bridge Hotel. 8th October - Take 1.

Andy Champion (double bass), Adrian Tilbrook (drums), Paul Edis (electric piano), Mark Williams (guitar) & Graeme Wilson (tenor & baritone saxophones).
Having attended Chad Taylor's workshop earlier in the evening at Gateshead Old Town Hall I had a decision to make - head for Blaydon to hear Dave Cliff & Geoff Simkins or walk across the High Level Bridge to catch the debut performance of Andy Champion's new band ACV.
The short walk and the promise, no, make that the certainty, of a first class pint and the Bridge it was.
A pint of Skinner's Keel Over (all the way from Truro) in hand, I walked into the upstairs room as the opening number from Andy Champion's new band held the attention of a sizeable audience. Almost all of the material was from the pen of Champion (charts were all over the place!).
Readers all, the hand picked musicians got inside the tunes and offered up some superb solos - Williams (move over Frank Gamble) and Wilson were particularly good (aren't they always?). Paul Edis' Bill Evans - like playing was less evident in this context. His playing was more like that of Keith Jarrett from Miles' electric period.
Some parts were written to achieve an electric organ sound - Edis got it just right. Bass and drums, a regular working unit, kept it altogether (Adrian Tilbrook excelling in a dynamic, driving performance). Compositions such as 'Waking the Sleeper', 'Lazy Left Hand' and 'You Add to My Stress' were but three of many written by the evening's 'Main Man', Mr.A.Champion.
Thelonius Monk's 'Hackensack' was also given a great work out. At its conclusion Champion apologised for playing it, suggesting it was more like 'Hackensackrilege'. Hey, it was great stuff - don't apologise. Play it again, Andy!
ACV will be playing again soon at a venue near you. Watch this space.
Russell .

1 comment :

Geo Mil said...

As I forgot to mention too Russell, I thought the V got a canny result in the uncharted free-improv territories - they were listening and responding well, creating the kind of artistic tension that comes from losing your sat-nav in the middle of Jesmond - it aint easy, I know ; what d' you think? Geo

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