23 January 2023


The name was a little odd and to some degree so was the music.  Richard suggested Swamp jazz for a style.  And this mix of guitars and violin made for memories of Mahavishnu from tone if not from style.  Two crisp guitars, again of quite different sound and style.  Lachlan was hard and sharp, uneffected, with short bends suggesting heavy strings.  Dylan played lighter, fingers gentle and delicate and with softer tone, perhaps reverb, or chorus given his Roland jazz chorus amp.  Then that unusual instrument for jazz or later styles, the violin.  That was spacious with reverb and tight and fast with chops.  We wondered why there's not more violin in modern musics.   It's a great tone and there are tons of well trained players if not necessarily players with understanding of the styles.  Certainly El has solo chops but also an awareness of the context and accompaniment.  Lovely.  Arpeggiated sequences and scalar flourishes and all manner of bowed effects were common, but also tenderness as in her lullaby composition.  As for the back line, as a bassist I much admire Chris, his aptness and ease along with fierce chops when that's called on and that insistent while soft tone, and Gus on drums was tight and expressive.   We heard several guitarist tunes, from John Abercrombie and Pat Metheny, and a few originals, demanding or relaxed, always played with respect and understanding.  And this is just the opening band for the night?  Looking good.

Elastic Molasses comprised  Lachlan Coventry and Dylan Slater (guitars), Llewellyn Osborne (violin), Chris Pound (bass) and Gus Henderson (drums).  EM played at Smiths.

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