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Bristol jazz this week – 29 May

May 29, 2018
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As anticipated, I failed to benefit from several notable gigs last week. Eyebrow were excellent at St George’s, though. Not so taken with Mammal Hands, unlike the rest of the audience who responded warmly to their simple, riffy pieces. As Tony Benjamin relates, the sound wasn’t great, but there was another problem – I find what they do a little dull, overall. The event rate is low, and it’s a all bit monotonous, and predictable. Lots of folks obviously like their music like this, but if jazz is the sound of surprise, then that’s to be found elsewhere.

Happily, we made it back from a trip up North in time to catch Greg Cordez’s birthday celebration gig at the Fringe on Sunday night, which was an endearingly ramshackle affair, and musically rewarding, as such evenings often are. Especially good to hear Michael Blake, who plays so well on Greg’s last album, on tenor. I hadn’t come across this accomplished US-based player before but his stuff is well worth exploring.

Plenty more on offer this week – as listed here. I’ll be giving Tigran a try next weekend, on the basis of growing reputation and recommendations. Didn’t hear him last time out at St George’s when, they say, he “left the audience almost dizzy with the evidence of his genius”(!). I did find a European Festival show, a few years ago, marred by a lot of bombastic stuff derived from his affection for heavy-metal, which overwhelmed the rest of the set. Hoping for something a bit more reflective this time round.


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