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Bebop Spoken There

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Postage

13,348 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 13 years ago. 766 of them this year alone and, so far, 40 this month (June 11).

From This Moment On

JUNE

Fri 11: Faye Aspinall @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Solo, ‘postmodern jazz singer’.

Sat 12: Tribute to Gerry Hughes (Tees Hot Club) @ Dorman's Club, Middlesbrough. 12 noon (jazz 2:00-3:30pm). £5.00. Outdoor event. Details from 01642 823813.

Sun 13: Vieux Carré Hot Four @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay (12 noon).

Sun 13: Sunday Jazz @ The Radio Rooms, Berwick (2:00pm).

Sun 13: Charlotte Keeffe Quartet @ The Globe, Newcastle. (8:00pm). £10:00. Advance booking essential at: www.jazz.coop.

Monday, April 03, 2017

GIJF Day 3: Sulzmann/Iles Duo & Trish Clowes 'My Iris' Quartet - Sage Gateshead - April 2

Stan Sulzmann (tenor); Nikki Iles (piano).
(Review by Lance/Photos courtesy of Russell).
Some, but not all, of the material was from the duo's 2014 album Stardust and, like the album, made for a pleasurable listening experience albeit not an earth-moving one.
The musicianship was faultless. How could it not be with two such seasoned professionals?
Polished and polite - what else could you expect from a duo playing indoors on a sunny Sunday afternoon? Binker and Moses they weren't and I'm sure they'd probably never want to be either but I did miss bass and drums. Perhaps if the tenor had been miked up a bit more or it had been a late evening session in more intimate surrounds, who knows?
Nevertheless, and whilst it didn't totally float my boat, it didn't sink it either!
During the interval, holding a referendum with other members of the Jazz Constabulary, it came across as a 50/50 hung jury. Such is the appeal of jazz and music in general - it's in the ear of the beholder. 

Trish Clowes (tenor/soprano); Ross Stanley (Hammond/piano); Chris Montague (guitar); John Blease (drums).
The set that followed by the Trish Clowes 'My Iris' Quartet was very much an up-front in your face contrast to what had preceded. After a seemingly interminable, long sustained notes introduction on soprano, Clowes finally hit the deck and she was going for gold - the soprano was on fire and any snakes she may have charmed were burned alive. Switching to tenor, Professor Clowes - yes the gal is a Professor of Jazz and Improvisation at the Guildhall, like our policemen, our professors are getting younger - blew the cobwebs away. I wonder, was Binker ever one of her students? Electronic effects were used sparingly and didn't detract too much from the music.
On guitar, Gateshead lad Chris Montague returned to his hometown and showed them how it's done whilst, dep drummer John Blease sailed miraculously through the charts.
Ross Stanley is no stranger to the northeast and it's a rare travelling band that doesn't include Ross in the lineup. Tonight he switched from Hammond to Steinway and back again. Trish introduced one of the more balladic numbers as a chance to hear Ross on the Steinway and, to quote, he did treat it in a fine way!
All of the compositions, I think, were from Ms. Clowes current album - My Iris, reviewed by Russell back in January.
Lance.

2 comments :

Unknown said...

I must take issue with your review. It's Stan Sulzman not Steve and the concert was on Sunday afternoon not Saturday. Polite yes but what a rare pleasure to hear unamplified tenor sax. With amplification you lose much of the breathiness and richness of the sound. Let's have more acoustic instrumental performances.

Lance said...

Hi Robert, yes Stan it is as I've been reminded on an hourly basis! As a fan of Stan's for many years I can only claim a 'senior moment' for this error. Likewise the Saturday in the text as opposed to the correct date in the heading. But, thanks Robert for correcting me. I need readers like yourself to keep me up to speed. As regards the actual gig, I stand by my measured enthusiasm. Changing the subject, a lot of emerging talent at the Caff tonight!

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