Kairos 4tet, Future Inn, Sunday May 2nd

Kairos 4tet returned to the Future Inn stage on Sunday with the electrifying rhythm section of  Ivo Neame , Jasper Hoiby and Jon Scott behind leader Adam Waldmann.  This is an exciting band, flexing their improvisational muscles a bit more than I recall the last time I saw them with a slightly different line-up, playing a brace of compositions from the pen of the leader with some distinctive qualities. Lots of cyclical pattern like melodic fragments over urgent often lopsided grooves from bass and drums, the piano  doubling some elements playing complementary, rippling arpeggios against others. There were frequent shifts of pace within tunes and different episodes; repeats of a theme separating solos.  The boggling technical facility of Hoiby on the bass meant he was doubling the snakey theme of Me and you 100 degrees and the folky riffing hook of Statement of Intent. These were all setting the scene for some powerful soloing. Neame on piano nearly stole the show on a couple of occasions. On the blazing opener Russel’s Resurgence,  fragementary flurries of notes, and dissonant stabs gradually built to a storming post-bop like work out, Jon Scott on drums and Hoiby exchanging broad grins as they drove him on and the result greeted delightedly by the audience. He did it again in more lyrical and emotional vein on the balladic Simpler Times.  After switching to tenor Waldmann sinuous keening lines had me melting (and putting me in mind of one of my favourites Julian Arguelles who I’d missed at the Cheltenham festival).  A lovely gig and I was persuaded to listen again by buying the CD.

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