Quick post to share Dan Paton’s photo of the LUMEkestra in action last night at IKLECTIK. It was a fantastic night: the venue was packed out, good times were had and new music was made. There will be more…..see you next time!
We’re very happy to welcome Madwort Sax Quartet to Hundred Years Gallery for an important event in the group’s life: the making of their debut album. This gig will be recorded by Alex Bonney for a future release. Having played a sold-out gig at Manchester Jazz Festival in the summer – ably assisted at the last minute by LUME’s own Dee Byrne – the quartet are now back on home turf for this special performance.
Playing Tom Ward’s compositions, the band explores irregular grooves and unusual harmonies inspired by mathematics and numerology, framed by the intuitive expressionism of free improvisation. This is a challenging line-up that allows for beautifully blended harmonies, intricate polyrhythms and abrasive dissonances. Inspirations include the movement of the planet earth through space, Steve Coleman, pioneering saxophone quartet Rova, Tim Berne, and transcriptions of bird song.
“The group’s sychronisation, the engaging, rounded brass sound and the impressive ease with which the four musicians blended to dish out a significantly distinctive musical proposition” – LondonJazzNews.com
Tom Ward alto sax/compositions
Chris Williams alto/soprano sax
Andy Woolf tenor sax
Cath Roberts bari sax
Hundred Years Gallery, 13 Pearson Street, E2 8JD. Doors 8pm, music 8.30pm. One Bank of England note. Tickets are available in advance from the Luminous Bandcamp site.
This week we’re very happy to host the London date on Manchester-based drummer Johnny Hunter’s UK tour with his quartet.
With a background of both the avant-garde and more mainstream jazz, Johnny has performed with Mick Beck, Nat Birchall, Jamil Sheriff, Corey Mwamba, Steve Beresford, Adam Fairhall and Steve Berry to name a few. As well as leading his quartet, Johnny plays with a multitude of other bands including Marley Chingus, Engine Room Favourites, the Blind Monk Trio, the Dub Jazz Soundsystem and Skamel. He runs the jazz jam night at Matt & Phred’s jazz club, the monthly ‘Brilliant Corners Jazz Club‘ in Sheffield, and is also involved in the Manchester free improv night ‘The Noise Upstairs‘.
Playing Johnny’s original tunes, the quartet playing for us this week formed to explore the freedoms and challenges presented by the absence of a harmony instrument. This year they were one of the bands who appeared at the Jazz On 3 ‘BBC Introducing’ gig at Manchester Jazz Festival, and their first record ‘Approprations’ is out on the excellent Efpi Records.
Ben Watte tenor sax
Graham South trumpet
Stewart Wilson double bass
Johnny Hunter drums
‘Appropriatons’ sleeve artwork by Angela Guyton.
Come and check out this excellent touring band!
This week we have a saxophone-heavy double bill (the best kind, no?). Julie Kjær returns to LUME with an exciting trio, and the Madwort Sax Quartet make their first appearance at Long White Cloud.
Madwort Sax Quartet
Tom Ward assembled the Madwort Sax Quartet in 2011 to play his own compositions and explore guided group improvisation. Tom’s influences include numerology and the movement of the planet earth through space, Steve Coleman, pioneering saxophone quartet Rova, Tim Berne, and transcriptions of bird song. Of technical interest was exploring contemporary techniques such as complex time signatures and metric modulations without the presence of a dedicated drummer or percussionist, and exploring harmony without a chordal instrument.
Said LondonJazz blog about the band’s first gig: “The group’s sychronisation, the engaging, rounded brass sound and the impressive ease with which the four musicians blended to dish out a significantly distinctive musical proposition made for a perfect opening sortie, and suggested that we may well be hearing much more from them.”
Tom Ward alto saxophone & composition
Chris Williams soprano & alto saxophones
Andy Woolf tenor saxophone
Cath Roberts baritone saxophone
(And in the rabbit head: Dave O’Brien, who produced the sax quartet’s 2012 recording)
Julie Kjær/Tori Handsley (plus special guest Ruth Goller!)
New duo collaboration comprising harpist Tori Handsley and saxophonist and flautist Julie Kjær exploring angular grooves and captivating improvisations. This evening they will be inviting the excellent Ruth Goller to join them on bass.
Tori Handsley started playing the piano at the age of 3 and the harp at the age of 6. Originally classically trained, she grew up listening to the music of Miles Davis, Bird, Dizzy, Keith Jarrett and many more, and was drawn to the freedom of jazz and improvisation. One of the highlights of her career was touring with her childhood hero Nigel Kennedy in 2010, after being invited to be a part of his band for his Duke Ellington tour. Tori has since performed with other notable artists including: Orphy Robinson, Cleveland Watkiss, Pat Thomas, Claude Deppa, Shabaka Hutchings, Doug Boyle, Adam Waldmann and more.
Julie Kjær’s edgy and thoughtful playing and ‘dark, otherworldly imagery’ (Jazzwise) has become incerasingly evident around Europe, inhabiting ground between composition and free improv. She has recorded and toured internationally with Django Bates and his band StoRMChaser, as well as with the Danish big-band “Blood Sweat Drum ’n’ Bass” where she has played with amongst others: Dave Douglas, Arve Henriksen and Palle Mikkelborg. She plays with the London Improvisers Orchestra and is a leader and sidewoman of several other English and Danish ensembles. Julie was recently chosen to be a Sound and Music “New Voice” artist and will be a part of the ‘Portfolio’ artist development program for improvisers.
Join us for a night of exciting new music! Doors 8pm, music at 8.30pm…
This week at LUME we’re heading back to The Harrison, and inviting Tom Ward to take the stage once again following last month’s debut of his other group Madwort’s Mechanical Mindset.
MADWORT SAX QUARTET
The Madwort Sax Quartet formed in 2011 to play compositions by Tom Ward and guided group improvisation. Tom’s influences include numerology and the movement of the planet earth through space, Steve Coleman, pioneering saxophone quartet Rova, Tim Berne, and transcriptions of bird song. Of technical interest was exploring contemporary techniques such as complex time signatures and metric modulations without the presence of a dedicated drummer or percussionist, and exploring harmony without a chordal instrument.
All the members bring their own individual, contrasting voices to the saxophone: Andy’s warm-toned, mellifluous tenor; Chris’s assertive, energetic alto familiar to fans of Led Bib; Tom’s lyrical, passionate but more reserved alto; and Cath’s fluid, assured baritone. When required, though, the ensemble manages to blend beautifully into a homogenous whole that belies these contrasts.
The group has been very well received (“a significantly distinctive musical proposition” – LondonJazz blog, September 2012), has recorded an EP’s worth of material (slated for release late 2013), and has played gigs in London, Manchester (hosted by Efpi Records) and Derby (hosted by Corey Mwamba).
The line-up is:
Tom Ward: alto saxophone & composition
Chris Williams: soprano & alto saxophones
Andy Woolf: tenor saxophone
Cath Roberts: baritone saxophone
More about the quartet and Tom’s other projects at his Madwort website. See you at the gig!