07 February 2024

SoundOut 2024 / 5

Then the second half of Saturday session 2.  First up an interesting session perhaps led by Jim Denley.  Unlike others, this was a series of "tunes", each with a theme or approach, seemingly prepared to be led by one or other performer.  It had me wondering if this was a CD launch!  Performers were Elizabeth Jigalin, Helen Svoboda, Jean-Sebastien Mariage, Jim Denley and Laurence Pike.  Feels variously changed and were led by or centred on instruments and instrumental techniques.  Thus I noted: rippling piano with distorted guitar; pining feel with guitar and brushes; bowed guitar with bass harmonics and unison vocals; busy frantic distorted guitar and slammed piano; rubber mallet on bass with damped guitar notes; harmonics, guitar e-bow, mallets on cymbals, bowed bass, sparse piano, flute vibrato, build to finale.  Fascinating, unexpected and well received.  Next was mainly electronics with projections performed by Hannah de Feyter, Danny Wild (Lowflung), Yichen Wang and Nicci Hayes.  Hannah had a viola but mostly played effects and presumably loops in the effects chain.  Danny played a complex looking suitcase of a synth and Yichen a tiny but surprisingly powerful (and costly) Teenage Engineering OP-1 synth.  The whole was electronica, groove and metallics with some effective projections behind.  Nice.  Then the Clayton Thomas Large Ensemble.  Rules, structure and guidance were discussed in another post.  Clayton introduced it as a political action as any group activity is (interesting thought) and highlighted the horror of Gaza and related and committed the performance to this stand.  It was an intelligent, thoughtful, quite radical and informed presentation.  Much admiration for that.  Then we played.  I stood centre with basses right and left wing, behind Miro so I was particularly well placed to luxuriate in a glorious tone and subtle melody.  This moved into our community improvs with rules and ultimately to a drone from Helen, a piano solo from Novak (again a stunner) against a growing crescendo of moving all-in drone until it dwarfed the piano and Clayton signalled a stop.  The whole was ~30-minutes as these sets are.  The solos from Miro and Novak were stunning, I felt the improv segment was better in practice but still OK, the crescendo was a stunner and very loud at the end.  The audience was small but the reception was strong.  So a success.  Much enjoyed.

Performers for set 4 were Elizabeth Jigalin (piano), Helen Svoboda (bass), Jean-Sebastien Mariage (guitar), Jim Denley (winds) and Laurence Pike (drums).  For set 5 were Hannah de Feyter (viola), Danny Wild (Lowflung) (synth), Yichen Wang (synth) and Nicci Hayes (projections).  Set 6 was the Large Ensemble led by Clayton Thomas (bass) and featuring Miroslav Bukovsky (trumpet), Helen Svoboda (bass) and Novak Minojlovic (piano).

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