This video has surfaced of MoonMot at BeJazz in Bern earlier this year! We’re playing ‘Avignon’ by our keyboard player Oli Kuster. The UK/Swiss sextet is touring the UK in January, so head to the shiny new MoonMot website for more info and to get in touch with us…
In August I’m heading to Belgium to play at Sound In Motion’s Summer Bummer Festival 2019 in Antwerp! The festival have put together a trio of me, Dirk Serries and Tullis Rennie. A first meeting in this lineup, so it should be a really nice set. The rest of the day looks great too…you can read more about the festival on the Sound In Motion website.
New tour, new flyer! I’m pretty pleased with this one, which is a digital mash-up of Angela Guyton‘s awesome Catfish logo design and some hand-written/drawn text by me.
Anyway, it’s been a while since Anton Hunter and I – aka Ripsaw Catfish – have been on tour, but it’s happening this June. We’re playing four dates in the North of England and London. If you’re in the vicinity of any of the gigs, come out and hear us. Our second album Namazu, which apparently came out two years ago (!) on Raw Tonk Records, will be on the merch table too. Onward, Catfish!
Out today is something I’m really happy to be involved with: Boundaries, an LP on the new multi.modal label. Based at SPARC (Sound Practice and Research @ City), a research centre at the Music Department of City, University of London, multi.modal is run by Tullis Rennie and Claudia Molitor. In their own words:
‘multi.modal is a new London based record label that muddies the borders between improvisation, field recording and composition. Each release on the label will triangulate these artistic spaces and reflect contemporary music practices, which tend to be collaborative and multimodal.’
I was lucky enough to be invited to work with City University Experimental Ensemble in April 2017, making a new graphic score, March Of The Egos, for them as well as playing my piece Off-World (as heard on the Favourite Animals album). We performed the two pieces at IKLECTIK, and it’s this recording that you can hear on side B of ‘Boundaries’.
The title of the release refers to side A of the LP: two interpretations of Chieko Shiomi’s Boundary Music. This 1963 text score reads: ‘Make the faintest possible sound to a boundary condition whether the sound is given birth to as a sound or not. At the performance, instruments, human bodies, electronic apparatus or anything else may be used.’
The Boundaries album is distributed by NMC Recordings and can be ordered from their website. I also have a couple of copies that I’ll be selling at gigs, so come and find me on a merch table somewhere soon!
Lastly I should mentioned the beautiful design work by Alexander Rennie. Look at the gorgeous cover!
Update: I’ve been alerted to a lovely review of this record on the Further blog, in which Mat Smith describes CUEE’s performances of my pieces as ‘a vibrant, colourful, euphorically noisy collision between noir jazz and electronics’ (Off-World) and ‘a discordant, joyously sprawling piece wherein each instrument and player seems to be vying for airtime’ (March Of The Egos). Thanks Mat!
This Wednesday 15th May, I’m playing in a trio with Tullis Rennie and Otto Willberg at SET in Dalston. It’s the second gig for this group, which originally got together last year for a gig at Liz Exell’s Jazz Herstory series at Poplar Union. I’m looking forward to playing together again! Otto and I collaborateid on this nice photo flyer (?!) for the occasion…
A nice gig coming up: on Saturday 11th May I’m playing in a quartet with Charlotte Keeffe, Benedict Taylor and Alex Ward at Hundred Years Gallery. This group will be a visiting ensemble at City University the week before, playing for a workshop with the composition students, so this concert will be a nice opportunity to make music together in a live setting. Timings and more about the musicians are on the Hundred Years Gallery website. Quite pleased with my flyer for this one!
At the end of the month I’m heading to Switzerland on tour with the newly-named MoonMot sextet. This group originally came out of a LUME collaboration with Jazzwerkstatt Bern in 2017, featuring UK and Swiss musicians and playing the music of our LUME quartet project Word Of Moth. The UK/CH ensemble has now taken on its own identity and has a recording session and tour lined up, all masterminded by trombone player Simon Petermann. The dates:
And the personnel:
Simon Petermann – trombone
Dee Byrne – alto saxophone
Cath Roberts – baritone saxophone
Oli Kuster – piano/keyboards
Seth Bennett – double bass
Johnny Hunter – drums
A video has surfaced, on the Mopomoso YouTube channel, of my set with Alex Ward last September. The whole thing is here – I remember it being pretty full-on and a lot of fun!