sun 13/10/2019

fusion

CD: Partisans - Swamp

The swamp, all grime and alligators, is not somewhere most jazz or rock fans will expect to spend much time, a soggy Glastonbury aside, and it’s a puzzling title for a work of reflective delicacy and sympathetic instrumental colouring. Partisans...

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Swan Lake, Dada Masilo, Sadler's Wells

There are all sorts of companies and shows out there that claim to “rock” the ballet, or otherwise shake up, take down or reinvent an art form that, they imply, is (breathe it softly, the dirty word) elitist, or at least irrelevant. Few, I’d imagine...

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Pat Metheny Unity Group, Eventim Apollo

The Eventim (Hammersmith) Apollo, where Pat Metheny’s Unity Group last night gave a spellbinding, if sometimes baffling, performance, has hosted a goodly range of gigs in its time. Few of these can have offered such diversity within a single evening...

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CD: John Harle & Marc Almond - The Tyburn Tree: Dark London

It's hard to countenance sometimes that there was an era where Marc Almond could have been a bona fide, chart-smashing pop star. His ability to parlay the archest of high camp and the most grotesque of low life into something digestible by genuine...

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Tomatito, Sadler's Wells

He looks the part: straggly, desert hair and haunted fizzog. He sounds the part: opening dry rhythmic strumming over unchorded strings; acrobatic trills; percussive attack. Flanked on the left by two singers, Kiki Cortinas and Simón Román, and a...

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Herbie Hancock Plugged In, Royal Festival Hall

At the beginning of last night's show, Herbie Hancock looked like he was going to perform with the dignity and serenity befitting a 72-year-old with some 50 years playing experience. The improvisation that launched from a base of Wayne Shorter's “...

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Interview: 10 Questions for Herbie Hancock

Herbie Hancock has never stood still. He hit the ground running, joining Miles Davis's second great quintet on piano in 1963 at the age of just 23, and from that moment on demonstrated a Stakhanovite work ethic and appetite for the new which saw him...

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Larry Graham & Graham Central Station, Clapham Grand

At 66 Larry Graham remains a remarkably supple, handsome man. The huge afro that once towered over him is long gone but the ability to pluck and thump the funkiest rhythms on earth from his white bass remains unmatched. Graham made his name as...

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Getatchew Mekuria and the Ex, Rich Mix

“It’s cultural imperialism,” a middle-aged gentleman felt compelled to say to me, presumably because I was the bloke with the notebook. “Then all pop music is cultural imperialism,” is what I should have fired back at him, had I not been so immersed...

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Anoushka Shankar, Colston Hall, Bristol

In the age of Skype and no-frills budget travel, frontiers barely exist – at least if you’re not an immigrant or refugee. World music is as much about boundary-breaking and fusion these days as it is about discovering the unsullied treasures of what...

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CD: Buika – En Mi Piel

With an expensive-looking camera in one hand and a cigarette in the other, Spanish singer Buika’s sepia-tinted CD cover photo is making eyes at me, making it hard for me to think of a bad word to say about this career-so-far summation. I don’t know...

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Imperial Tiger Orchestra, Boston Dome

There’s more than one way to reinterpret or simply embrace the extraordinary wealth of Ethiopian music that Francis Falceto has given us with the still growing Ethiopiques CD series of 1970s Ethio-jazz (as the style has been inadequately labelled)....

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