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Monday, February 18, 2013

Robert Mitchell & Corey Mwamba @ Lit & Phil. February 13

The Lit and Phil’s latest concert featured the brilliant Robert Mitchell (piano) and Corey Mwamba (vibes). 
(Review by Russell)
Leicester’s Corey Mwamba has become a familiar face thanks to Jazz North East booking him to work in a variety of contexts including Alexander Hawkins, Ntshuks Bonga and Andy Champion. On this occasion he played a solo set featuring a selection of modern jazz standards and one or two original compositions. Extended techniques (bow, body and breath) and audible exhalation held the audience spellbound. Herbie Hancock’s One Finger Snap, Monk’s Evidence, Mack the Knife and Mwamba’s Then She Looked were stand-out tunes delivered with intensity by the amiable vibes man. 
Robert Mitchell has appeared on Tyneside with his own ensemble Panacea, in trio format and memorably with Chicagoan alto saxophonist Matana Roberts. This Lit and Phil date offered a new challenge - compose for and perform left hand only! There is a CD documenting the project - The Glimpse - and this Newcastle date was mid-tour thus the virtuoso was in the groove from the start. Prior to his performance Mitchell warmed-up for well over an hour and declared the library’s Kawai piano a superior instrument. A feather in the Lit and Phil’s cap! In the event the set comprised left hand only pieces (The Glimpse and The Sage were two highlights of many) and tunes for the more conventional two handed form. 
By way of an encore Corey Mwamba joined Mitchell to play a couple of tunes, notably Cumulus. Jazz North East’s next promotion sees the return of tenor saxophonist Simon Spillett working once more with the Paul Edis Sextet at the Corner House Hotel. Anyone who heard Spillett last time will know they are in for a treat. Those who have yet to hear him will scarcely believe their ears. Clear your diary…Thursday February 28 is the date. Don’t miss this one.
Russell              

2 comments :

Anonymous said...

Hello! Many thanks for the kind words - but I'm from Derby. All the best, C.

Russell said...

Hey Corey, I know you're from Derby. Sorry!

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