RECENT LISTENING: June 2021

‘Divided Horizon’ – Aki Rissanen
Aki Rissanen – solo piano/Omniwerk
Release date: 25 June 2021
editionrecords.com

‘Right Here, Right Now’Charlotte Keeffe
Charlotte Keeffe, Moss Freed, Ben Handysides, Ashley John Long, Diego Sampieri, London Improvisers Orchestra
Release date: 11 June 2021
discusmusic.bandcamp.com

‘Path of Seven Colors’ – Ches Smith’s We All Break
Ches Smith, Matt Mitchell, Miguel Zenón, Sirene Dantor Rene, Daniel Brevil, Markus Schwartz, Fanfan Jean-Guy Rene
Release date: 11 June 2021
weallbreakpyroclastic.bandcamp.com

‘Tales from the Jacquard’ – Julian Siegel Jazz Orchestra
Julian Siegel, Nick Smart, Tom Walsh, Percy Pursglove, Henry Lowther, Claus Stotter, Mark Nightingale, Trevor Mires, Harry Brown, Richard Henry, Mike Chillingworth, Jason Yarde, Stan Sulzmann, Tori Freestone, Gemma Moore, Mike Outram, Liam Noble, Oli Hayhurst, Gene Calderazzo
Release date: 25 June 2021
juliansiegel-whirlwind.bandcamp.com

‘We’re Young Pilgrims’ – Young Pilgrims
Richard Foote, Kieran McLeod, Mike Adlington, Sean Gibbs, Sam Wooster, Michael Owers, Chris Maddock, Jonathan Silk, Euan Palmer
Release date: 18 June 2021
emporium.stoneylane.net

‘Isn’t It Romantic?’ – Aki Takase, Daniel Erdmann
Aki Takase, Daniel Erdmann
Release date: 7 May 2021
bmcrecords.hu

RECENT LISTENING: April 2020 (2)

Steal the Light – Let Spin
Moss Freed, Ruth Goller, Finlay Panter, Chris Williams
Release date: 17 April 2020 (Efpi Records)
letspin.bandcamp.com

Life is the Dancer – Rob Luft
Rob Luft, Joe Wright, Joe Webb, Tom McCredie, Corrie Dick with Byron Wallen, Luna Cohen
Release date: 17 April 2020 (Edition Records)
robluft.bandcamp.com

Rickety Racket – Martin Pyne Quartet
Philippe Guyard, Russell Jarrett, Marianne Windham, Martin Pyne
Release date: 3 April 2020 (Tall Guy Records)
martinpyne.bandcamp.com

Two Chevrons Apart – Yuri Goloubev
Tim Garland, John Turville, Yuri Goloubev, Asaf Sirkis
Release date: 17 April 2020 (Basho Records)
bashorecords.com

Neutral Tones – Beresford Harries
Charlie Beresford, Tim Harries
Release date: 15 April 2020 (The 52nd)
the52nd.bandcamp.com

Trio (3CD) – Felix Jay
Felix Jay, Rob Luft, Byron Wallen, Nicola Alesini, Susan Alcorn, BJ Cole, Jan Steele
Recorded 1999–2019 (Hermetic Recordings)
burningshed.com (TBC) and ebay.co.uk

‘Flekd’ (EP) – Flekd

Flekd300

THE SPHERES of contemporary jazz, English/Celtic folk and world music unite in this inviting five-track debut EP from Flekd – an acoustic quintet who, between them, draw on an impressive depth of musical experience, possessing the skills to convincingly weave together these various strands into cohesive, chamber music soundscapes.

Read the full review at LondonJazz News…

 

Jane South flute, accordion
Rebecca Nash piano
Moss Freed guitar
Rob Paterson double bass
Matt Fisher drums, percussion

flekd.co.uk

(2014)

‘Let Spin’ – Let Spin

LetSpin

THE GUITAR PLAYING and writing of Moss Freed captivate me. His style seems to hark back to the vibrant ’70s period of discovery and invention, when ‘prog’ was king and the UK was bursting at the seams with high-profile, home-grown rock and jazz/rock talent. Yet the Berklee College-trained guitarist also has a forward-thinking approach to his music, which is reflected in this wholly collaborative quartet project, ‘Let Spin’ – and recognised by artistically imaginative indie label Efpi Records.

Manchester-born Freed impressed with his 2013 release, ‘What Do You See When You Close Your Eyes?’ (reviewed here) – a particularly successful marriage of jazz/rock and literature in which eminent writers were invited to create their interpretations of already-conceived and recorded tracks. In ‘Let Spin’, he teams up with the same bassist, Ruth Goller (Acoustic Ladyland), along with Chris Williams (Led Bib) on alto sax and drummer Finlay Panter (Beats & Pieces Big Band), to deliver this eight-track debut release of powerful proportions… and equally-shared writing credits. For the most part, it’s hard-edged jazz and/or rock (depending on your viewpoint), Goller and Freed providing the propulsive electric framework on which Williams and Panter thrive.

The heavy unison sax, guitar and bass chromatics of Finlay Panter’s Awowowa immediately conjure thoughts of King Crimson, with fast-paced, stressed screeches and feedback – heady stuff indeed, especially when lines begin to cross and intertwine, Chris Williams’ alto displaying impressive Ron Aspery-like acrobatics and bite. Coincidentally (another ’70s ‘Back Door’ reference!), Ruth Goller’s bass technique is partially reminiscent of that of Colin Hodgkinson, combining – as in opening number, Castle, Sea, Ferry – strong melody and chordal groupings to great effect. Moss Freed’s bizarrely-titled, seven-minute How To Woo A Dolphin initially veers more towards a jazz soundworld, demonstrating Freed’s luxuriant guitar chords before his impassioned, sustained lead (with echoes of Mahavishnu) invites the quartet to break loose into a satisfyingly rich groove. Shapes & Sizes finds its writer, Chris Williams, pitching his raw sax improvisations against a great saturation of bass and wah-wah guitar, Panter relishing this full-on vibe.

The simple-yet-addictive retro bass hook of 102 Hill Street becomes irresistible, Freed and Williams establishing a very effective tonal sax/guitar partnership. Punching hard and heavy, thanks to Panter’s determined rhythm, it increases in intensity and complexity… and I can imagine a thrilling, extended, live showstopper! Mellower in approach, Goller’s Piper is neatly balanced – a platform for Williams’ alto ruminations, as well as Freed’s lush chords and clear solo creativity. From it’s title, it’s no surprise that Chris Williams’ Up And At Them is the rockiest number on the album, leaning towards Goller’s ‘Ladyland world – alto sax blowing hard through gritty, repeated riffs, plus terrifyingly-high reverbed solo work from Freed (to be revved up loud!). Ruth Goller’s ‘mock-tuning’ introduces the final track, Moss Freed’s A Change Is Coming, the band’s unison signature unfolding into a more lyrical, countrified expanse, yet still bursting with character and invention from all quarters.

‘Let Spin’ is released on 10 February 2014, available from efpirecords.com. Accompanying 10-date UK tour begins in Bath on 17 February, concluding at The Vortex on 27 February.


Moss Freed guitar
Chris Williams alto saxophone
Ruth Goller electric bass
Finlay Panter drums

mossfreed.com
soundcloud.com/mossfreed

Efpi Records – FP013 (2014)