London Jazz News

Young pianist Abel Marcel stood and stands for continued fresh and thrilling exploration on steady ground of and deep rootedness in Afro-American jazz tradition (from the south).

Cluster of diversity

The festival’s 18 concerts covered a greater variety of the musical game called ‘jazz’. This variety can loosely be grouped in five clusters. Multidisciplinary Surnatural Orchestra from France (reviewed separately) is a special case. It is the only group that cuts through all except the Fusion cluster.

There was drummer Gard Nilssen’s fast forward driven Acoustic Unity spinning elements of bop, Albert Ayler and Ornette Coleman in a two horns (André Roligheten and Fredrik Ljunkvist) line-up. Anna Högberg Attack and Thomas de Pourquery’s Supersonic operated in that high-energy vein too. 

Drummer Nasheet WaitsEquality Quartet with bassist Mark Helias, altoist Darius Jones and young pianist Abel Marcel Calderon stood and stands for continued fresh and thrilling exploration on steady ground of and deep rootedness in Afro-American jazz tradition (from the south).

Then there were the three female pianists generating clearly different experiential qualities. The trio of Hiromi operated in a large-scale fusion mould, collating diverse stylistic elements on a speeded-up, rock-driven base. Igor Matković hit the same road fully shining with the soaring trumpet lines he infused into his highly present quintet.


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