If I’ve been reveling in quiet these last few weeks (see my previous post), there have been a few outings. It would be churlish not to mention Matt Anderson‘s visit to to Bebop Club in January with his regular quartet (albeit with a late dep on piano), both for the quality of the gig, but also a reminder of the club’s really first class programme (more below). If you’re going to have a dep on piano, then Ivo Neame is quite an addition. With Bristol’s own Will Harris on bass and Jay Davies on the drums this is a really fine quartet, blending lyrical melodic writing with rhythmic drive and fiery improvising. Anderson is a fluent, supple player and the warmth of his tone adds another dimension. Neame brought an extra fizz, building to a characteristic tumult on The Ayes Have It.
The club has been excelling itself of late, with a string of great bookings and for extra thrills, there’s a special promotion on March 15th of Joel Harrison (American guitarist) with David Binney on alto and Gerald Cleaver at the drums and Michal Janisch on bass (details here, booking essential!)
This week in Bristol sees Iain Ballamy’s quartet with Jason Rebello at The Fringe on 26th Feb and then Tord Gustavsen with Tore Brunborg at St. George’s on 27th; just an average week then. Further ahead, Iain pops up again as guest at St. James Wine Vaults in early March, and then Festival season begins.
Bristol Jazz and Blues returns at the end of March with a characteristic mix of ‘one-off’ specials and enticing gigs full listings here; Cheltenham Jazz with another many layered programme is at the beginning of May, and the middle of the month see’s Bath‘s now mainly literature festival sprinkled with Empirical pop-ups and and a set piece gig.
The spring is certainly looking promising.