Free Improv session at Robadors 23 – 18 Dec ’14

Ramon Prats (drums)
Arnau Obiols (drums)
Àlex Reviriego (bass)
Marc Cuevas (bass)
Iván González (trumpet)
Pol Padrós (trumpet)
Tom Chant (tenor sax)

For the last free Thursday session of the year at Robadors 23 (well, I think it was the last, there didn’t seem to be one on Xmas Day?) we had something symmetrically special: 2 drums, 2 basses, 2 trumpets, crowned(?) by a single tenor saxophone. Well, eventually crowned, once TC had arrived to join in, airline luggage tags still flapping from his axe case.

It was interesting to see how this latest combination affected the structure of the sound. It seemed that each pair began with defined roles. The Thursday regulars seemed to take the lead: IG setting the phrasing (prior to TC’s arrival) with PP repeating and replying; likewise ÀR set the bass pace (sorry, couldn’t resist) with MC bringing a softer, subtler attack to the party. And the two drumkits just locked together in the proverbial drum thunder (was it just me, or at one point was one pounding the skins while the other shivered the cymbals, as if it were a single huge kit and a four-armed drummer?) Anyway, into all this initial delicious chaos comes Chant, all beard and hat, unpacking, fixing a reed, checking, settling, and then… instant tenor frenzy, in the best, most exhilaratingly possible way. Both drumkits are now at full gallop, the trumpets are sobbing and moaning, MC’s bass is keeping us steady while ÀR is pushing a spare drumstick through his strings, and over it all, Chant’s discourse.

It’s actually very relaxing in a strange way. Close your eyes, let out a long breath, and feel yourself sinking into a morass of furious sound; let it all go, a symbolic surrender to the whimsical, unpredictable and insurgent furies of life, the universe and everything (the answer to which is – as we all know – 42; but until we know what that means exactly, a regular dose of Robadors 23 will do quite nicely).

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