22 November 2015


So said Simon Milman as he introduced the first set of his band Goal to Hurl. Jokingly. This was experimentation that I could easily enjoy: in the jazz tradition, informed chops, skills and intellectual exploration. It might have been a mystery, but we were let in on the secrets so we had some bearings. It's a skill of note. I was mightily impressed, intrigued but dumbfounded. It was not easy to imagine doing this. The first set was a series of 7 (read Septology) x 6-minute explorations guided by the most macro of charts. Stopwatches coordinated to start, then two minutes segments each guided by a simple instruction, then an end. The septology was: Density; Dynamics; Timbre; Articulation; Tempo; Extend-truncate; Duration. Otherwise this was all improvisation and intense listening. A rock beat and jazz swing appeared, some bowing, some more lyrical sax later after less tonal matters, a delightful but very background guitar solo line, bass slides and extended intervals. Nothing much planned but an intriguing and convincing investigation. The second set was also guided at a macro level. Simon called it Combination music, solos and groupings of 2 or 3 instruments, passing through the band, 4 parts again of 6 minutes each comprising 2 minutes solo then 2 minutes duo then 2 minutes trio, then start again with different permutations. More listening; more improv; different guiding framework. Then a small recapitulation as an encore. Again, intriguing and very successful. This is richly jazz-inspired experimental that I can immerse myself in with great pleasure. Loved it.

Goal to Hurl played at the Ainslie Arts Centre for the Confluence series. G2H are led by Simon Milman (bass) with Tom Fell (tenor), Matt Lustri (guitar) and Luke Glanville (drums).

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