Music / African

The week in Jazz July 31-Aug 6

By tony benjamin, Tuesday Aug 1, 2017

Another quiet week as August settles in, but another chance to explore a less well-known venue in search of fresh musical experiences. This week it’s the Crypt of St John the Baptist (On The Wall) – that’s the church with a passage way running through it to Broad Street – where promoters Cacophonous Sarcophagus are hosting a night of exploratory sound on Wednesday (2). Included on the bill is KURO, the electronically processed duo of French violinist Agathe Turner and double bass player Gareth Turner. KURO’s evolutionary ambient pieces of improvised music should greatly enhance the unusual venue and its acoustics.

The Kevin Figes Quartet (pic: Tim Dickeson)

The Kevin Figes Quartet  are at the slightly more mainstream venue of The Fringe on the same night, with saxophonist Kevin’s always interesting and melodic compositions sure to inspire great solos from Jim Blomfield (piano), Riaan Vosloo (bass) and Mark Whitlam (drums). Though not an original member of the quartet Riaan is an excellent bass player who has emerged across the Bristol scene since moving to Bristol last year.

Andrew Christie Quartet

Thursday night sees pianist Andrew Christie bring his filmic jazz quartet, complete with Sarah Moody’s distinctive cello, to the Salt Café. Andrew’s compositions have a highly visual quality that combine chamber jazz and cinematic soundtracks.

Ghanaian dance jazzer King Ayisoba

But if it’s something a bit lively you’re looking for, something maybe danceable even, then a couple of West African inspired gigs should be right up your street, starting with Ghanaian ‘hiplife’ star King Ayisoba at Crofters Rights (Tuesday 1)after putting on a great show at WOMAD. He’s headlining an intriguing triple-bill with creative guitarist Eric Chenaux and Japanese art-poppers Yama Warashi.

Mansion of Snakes brass section on the blow

The other big noise comes all the way from tropical Leeds in the shape of Mansion of Snakes, an energetic young big band who draw together Afrobeat, Sun Ra style cosmic funk and a whole heap of fun. They will be at Canteen (Saturday 5).

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