Yay, second time back (first time back) to the Boat Ting (or is it Boat-Ting?) club at the Yacht Club, London Embankment… On a boat, on the Thames, good music, excellent.
Once again, four groups / ensembles… Not quite as excellent a night as the first one; not really sure why… things were a little more sparse this time…
Steve Noble, Lol Coxhill, John Edwards
Last time, Steve Noble and John Edwards were playing with Alex Ward; this week they were joined by Lol Coxhill, forming a trio that I’d previously seen performing in the QEH foyer at last year’s London Jazz Festival. N+C+E are presumably a more formal group, since they’ll all be back again at Boat-Ting on 5th March…
Anyway… This was interesting, because the N+E+Ward group was really Hard, Rocking, Power… Lol Coxhill is a bit more meditative, I guess? A bit more rolling and developing rather than a continual onslaught of random, new ideas and directions; a completely different style of playing and music.
Steve Noble is my new favourite drummer, and I’ve seen him loads, now, in the last few months… (Well, ok, a few times.) I wrote about him briefly on here before… His arms are a constant flurry, dragging stuff off and on his kit, continually trying to produce new sounds… More of a drum-kit percussionist than straight-up drummer… He’s really fantastic and engaging to watch… You don’t have to just sit back and breathe it all in…!
John Edwards is always great… Is he the hardest working bassist in London? There haven’t been many times in the last few months when he hasn’t been playing… Perhaps I’m just picking obvious gigs to go to. In any case, he’s still a genius. Steve Noble is God; John Edwards is God too.
Lol Coxhill. I think I’ve seen him about four times, now? I don’t quite know what to make of it all, because he’s great, but difficult to pin down because his playing seems a lot more thoughtful than a lot of his contemporaries… That means his playing doesn’t really seem to instantly grab me as much as anyone else, but that’s probably a good thing and means he’s less full of tectonic tricks, a more intelligent (?) player. Anyway, I don’t know what I’m talking about… I need more Lol Coxhill records…
Sibyl Madrigal & Dominic Lash
Never heard Dominic Lash before. He was blinding; really percussive, random-bass that I love; the sort of stuff that makes me wish I knew how to play bass. Different to John Edwards who’s probably a bit more conventional in physical technique and less percussive on the strings. Sibyl Madrigal was doing poetry over all this; she’s also the curator of Boat-Ting itself (?)… Pretty intense stuff, and it was cool, but… liking her jazz “hot, wet and sticky”… Perhaps I’m just a repressed adolescent with no taste for high art…?
There are some clips of Lash on his MySpace profile.
Crossed Dress String Quartet +2
Last up was the Crossed Dress string quartet (+2)… (not my pix!) I don’t know who the +2 were, or what the difference is between the Crossed Dress quartet + 2, and the Crossed Dress Cuintet (besides one person, presumably)… Anyways; Linda Metcalfe, Lynda Beast, Mike Ferrari, Syd Hallet, Julian Doyle and Isaac Why, on violins mostly (plus the odd guitar and wood saw…).
It’s probably impossible to describe how brilliant this was; so I’m not going to bother. Culminating with Linda Metcalfe giving birth to a cabbage, live on stage. Surreal doesn’t really begin to describe it… Excellent finish to the evening, why was it over so quickly? +++++