The collection of young bands and musicians includes some of the most exciting currently working in Britain, and this four-day festival will feature new projects, special guests and friends of Loop. Of special interest to Midlands jazz fans are appearances by Dan Nicholls with group Mirror, Alcyona Mick playing her music for film, and Mark Hanslip in a duo.
It’s a new venue, and I’ve never been there but the fact that the Phronesis Alive album, as sensational sonically as it is musically, was recorded there should be a good enough recommendation.
Here’s the full Loop Festival line-up in detail:
Wednesday 16 March
8.30pm Mick Coady Quartet
Michael Buckley – tenor sax
Ivo Neame – piano
Mick Coady – bass
Sean Carpio – drums
Although generally regarded as tightly rooted in the jazz tradition, Mick Coady’s original work reveals another side of his musical character, one that draws its inspiration from a wide diversity of influences. The rich harmony and angular melodies prominent in his compositions are a result of his long immersion in the jazz idiom but the epic song forms and intense grooves that underlie many of his pieces are evidence of an earlier exposure to rock and folk, and many other musics besides. Coady’s performance at this 3rd annual Loop festival will be the first outing for a number of tunes currently in the works. It is also a prelude to his first recording as a leader (set for May), the result of a recent award granted to him under the Music Network Recording Scheme.
9.30pm JEANNE ADDED solo
Jeanne Added – voice / bass guitar
“Jeanne Added is always fascinating by her way of combining a laid back, almost detached attitude and maximal intensity, with a vocal technique which seems not wanting to show, between murmure, plain notes and words. a capella or with her bass, she sings her own songs as well as some of Prince, Purcell or Schubert.” franck bergerot, jazz magazine.
“With her we go through telluric and lyrical feelings, as we would in the company of a griot.” mathieu malgrange, atelier du plateau, paris.
10.30pm MA special
Tom Challenger – Tenor Saxophone
Matt Calvert – electronics
Ross Stanley – organ
Dave Smith – drums
+ John Blease (Percussion); Ben Bryant (Percussion)
Ma appear here with an expanded line-up (including a percussion section) performing (for the first time) a new piece of work written especially for this concert at the Forge.
Expect to hear Ma’s customary and highly individual improv-meets-dub-meets-electronica sound world, alongside percussive sounds that will be performed using the venue and space as key components to the overall musical result.
Thursday 17 March
7pm Presentation of the new Loop Compilation and the three albums launched at the Loop festival.
8.30pm Kindergarten (Yolk Collective)
Matthieu Donarier – clarinets & saxophones
Poline Renou – singer, keyboards player and composer
Kindergarten is a…children’s garden as the world is. Kindergarten results from the encounter of two musicians coming from very different musical worlds, its repertoire mixes with original compositions, revisited ancient and contemporary musics, improvised pieces, litterature reading and a touch of electronics… Together, Matthieu Donarier and Poline Renou have decided to build a peculiar, fragile and polymorphic musical universe, which dares silence and bareness, mixing written and instantaneous poetry, harmonic murmurs and rhythmic fury.
Microdiffusion, acoustic concerts taking place inside the audience and respect for silence are part of this flexible group concept, around which others musicians, dancers and writers will come along in future creations.
Kindergarten’s first album was released in April 2008 on Yolk Records.
9.30pm Arthurs.Høiby.Richie (F-ire Collective)
Tom Arthurs – trumpet
Jasper Høiby – bass
Stuart Richie – drums
‘This threesome has deserved all the praise it’s received this year. They are due for a lot more’ John Fordham, The Guardian
‘what a great trio… their session was a corker!’ Jez Nelson, BBC Radio 3, Jazz on 3
Wide-open, intensely rhythmic original compositions inspired by twisted dance-musics, concentrated yet intimate improv, various complexities of the [post-]modern world and avant-garde baking techniques… High-energy, highly interactive and fresh every time, Arthurs.Høiby.Ritchie are a trio with unlimited potential for invention and for the unexpected; manipulating and extending material through detailed improvisations, and with an individual take on the great composition/improvisation debate.
Playing music by Arthurs, Jasper Høiby and Stuart Ritchie complete a trio of personalities drawing on a wealth of influences and experiences.
A.H.R have performed at the Wigmore Hall, Cheltenham International Jazz Festival, the London Jazz Festival, Moving on Music (Belfast) and Manchester Jazz Festivals, as well as in France, Austria, Switzerland and Germany. In 2007 they performed specially commissioned music by leading SPNM composers at the Purcell Rooms. The composers were Ailis Ni Riain, Adam Melvin and Richard Glover.
AHR have recently returned from a collaboration with the Geneva Downtown Orchestra, featuring a suite of music commissioned by the GTDO, and in 2010, worked on a special project with the renowned Elysian (string) Quartet.
Their debut record, Explications,was released to much acclaim on Not Applicable records in 2008.
10.30pm Fringe Magnetic special (Loop Collective)
with guests Alex Bonney & Jim Hart
Rory Simmons – trumpet; Tori Freestone – Flute; Robin Fincker – clarinet; James Allsopp – bass clarinet; Kit Massey – violin; Nathalie Rosario – cello; Jasper Høiby – bass; Ivo Neame – piano; Ben Reynolds – drums + Alex Bonney – trumpet & Jim Hart – vibraphone
Led by trumpeter Rory Simmons (and featuring Jasper Høiby, Robin Fincker, James Allsopp amongst others), twisted ensemble Fringe Magnetic draw on the legacy of Django Bates and the clashing rhythms of the New York Downtown. Fringe Magnetic create an icy Anglo-Nordic ambience which can at once transform into quirky elastic rhythmic grooves; and the grunting power of a Tom Waits groan, which in the next moment leads you on a bizarre melodic journey which is as near Ligeti as it is Lykke Li.
Their performance at this year’s Loop Festival will include a specially written piece with an extended version of Fringe Magnetic. This performance will feature Jim Hart on vibraphone and Alex Bonney on trumpet.
Friday 18 March
8pm Projection of the silent film: Sunrise with music composed and improvised by Alcyona Mick, Geoff Hannan & Jon Wygens
Alcyona Mick – piano
Geoff Hannan – violin
Jon Wygens – guitar
Earlier in 2010 Alcyona Mick was commissioned by 7 Inch Cinema and supported by the Arts Council to compose a new score for one of cinema’s historical silent films, ‘Sunrise’. It was then performed live at the Flatpack Film Festival 2010.
Featuring Alcyona on piano, together with violinist Geoff Hannan and guitarist Jon Wygens who are both composers in their own right, the music has a strong improvisatory element alongside the written contemporary score.
9.30pm Risser / Duboc / Perraud trio (France)
Eve Risser – piano
Benjamin Duboc – bass
Edward Perraud – drums
Although a very recent band, its members Benjamin Duboc and Edward Perraud have been playing together for years in ETAU (out on creative sources) and THE FISH with Jean-Luc Guionnet (out on ayler records…). On several occasions Eve Risser and Benjamin Duboc found themselves playing together on various Parisian stages.
Soon, it becomes obvious that there is a common will between the three artists which leads them to start a trio around powerful music, at once organic and forceful. At the crossroad between free music and a wide range of other musical influences, their work focuses on the elasticity of the time.
Risser, Duboc and Perraud share an understanding of rhythm and harmony so close to telepathy that they could call their band ‘Evidence’ (Obviousness).
10.30pm Andrew Plummer’s World Sanguine Report
Andrew Plummer – voice; Alex Bonney – trumpet; James Allsopp – reeds; Chris Sharkey – guitar; Matt Bourne – keyboards; Dave Kane – bass; Tom Greenhalgh – drums
Part demonic vaudeville, part psychotic big band, vocalist Andrew Plummer revels and writhes in the macabre as he heads his jazz noir project World Sanguine Report through visceral tales from the dark side of life, love and death. Propelled by demented carny rhythms, Plummer’s bruised, gruff vocals and darkly-enthralling lyrics are enveloped in a tide of swirling tones and textures, with the constant threat of breaking into waves of cacophony. Featuring musicians of national and international renown, tonight World Sanguine Report will be serving up choice cuts from Plummer’s first three albums.
‘Moving between threatening intimacy and deranged demagoguery, rasping and roaring desperation before cutting off with a terrifying fixed smile, (W.S.R.) are fabulous, refreshing and uncategorisable music and excellent theatre.’ The Venue
‘(W.S.R.) twist the nobel craft of songwriting into a dystopian mindfuck…. Plummer’s warped vaudeville, always dark turning darker, is something entirely his own.’ The Wire
‘The honey-and-razor-blades voiced singer/composer: Andrew Plummer’s World Sanguine Report are a multi-headed beast of a band, boasting some of the freshest new talent on the UK scene. They all join together on Plummer’s heartrending wonky pieces, that sound part New Orleans brass band part Mr Bungle to spellbinding tragic-comic effect.’ Jazzwise
Saturday 19 March
Album Launch night. Recorded by BBC radio 3
8pm Mirror (Album Launch)
Dan Nicholls – keyboards/fx
James Allsopp – tenor saxophone
Dave Smith – drums
Mirror is a bold and engaging ensemble interpreting and reworking the compositions of keyboardist Dan Nicholls. Featuring the distinctive voices of James Allsopp and Dave Smith, the band’s highly dynamic sound ranges from thrash grooves to barely audible undertones – aiming for fluidity between written and unwritten, and exploring connections between sound and image.
9pm Hanslip / Carmona duo (Album Launch)
Mark Hanslip – tenor sax
Javier Carmona – drums
The duo of saxophonist Mark Hanslip and drummer/percussionist Javier Carmona will be playing music from their forthcoming album out on the Babel label in early 2011. Almost entirely improvised, their music is notable for extreme contrast between minimalist, ambient sounds (and silence) and dense, furious free-jazz, startling and sudden changes of direction and oddball musicianship.
10pm Splice (Album Launch)
Robin Fincker – tenor sax / clarinet
Alex Bonney – trumpet / electronics
Pierre-Alexandre Tremblay – bass / electronics
Dave Smith – drums
Splice’s raison d’être is to mesh together influences of contemporary jazz, free improv, loud and soft noise, punk grit, ambient music, and more… with seamless blends or blunt juxtapositions.
Featuring Alex Bonney on trumpet and electronics, Robin Fincker on tenor sax and clarinet, Dave Smith on drums, Pierre Alexandre Tremblay on bass guitar and electronics, Splice will launch their debut CD LAB at the 2011 Loop Festival at the Forge, London.
11pm Jim Hart / Ivo Neame Duo Plus
with guests Oren Marshall & Rory Simmons
Ivo Neame – Piano & Saxophone
Jim Hart – vibraphone & drums
+ Oren Marshall – tuba and Rory Simmons – trumpet
Multi-instrumentalists Jim Hart and Ivo Neame have been playing together since the beginning of the century. Both founder members of the Loop collective and members of each other’s bands, (The Ivo Neame Quartet and Jim Hart’s Gemini) they have developed a superb empathy for one another’s playing – ‘as if they are finishing each other’s sentences’. Their music is often rhythmically charged whilst being very fluid and open.
Duo Plus crept in to being after Ivo and Jim were asked on several occasions to play as a duo and began exploring the different textures that piano and saxophone (Ivo) with drums and vibraphone (Jim) could create. By chance Rory Simmons (trumpet) was at one of these gigs and he sat in. Duo Plus was born. Rory will feature again for the Loop festival and the duo will also be joined by tuba virtuoso Oren Marshall.
You can buy at ticket for a day or a two- or four-day pass. For more information, go here