Free Improv session at Robadors 23 – 27 Nov ’14

Ramon Prats (drums)
Tom Chant (tenor sax)
Marcel•lí Bayer (soprano sax and flute)
Don Malfon (alto sax)
Iván González (trumpet)
Marco Mezquida (piano)
Àlex Reviriego (bass)
Pablo Rega (el. guitar)

The second one of these Thursday sessions I’ve been to and I think I’m going to be a regular. There seems to be a core ‘band’ (use the term loosely!) and a revolving door policy for guests and the changing line up creates a sonic landscape that evolves from week to week, not to mention from second to second. This was a bonus evening: an 8-piece free jazz ensemble? Heaven!

For me, there’s nothing quite like the lift I get from that first wave in a free jazz session, that point of take-off. Maybe it’s early on, maybe you have to wait a while – and it doesn’t depend on volume, although that can help – but sooner or later all players really come together in a collective orgasmic frenzy, and then… and then… well, then you just close your eyes and let it wash over you, lift you, elevate you above the petty concerns of the day-to-day, everything else just drops away for a second or two. Then, if you have any sense, you smile.

Everyone played their part in the synergy but stand outs? Well, the addition of piano and flute gave some new tonal colours to last week. And when Don Malfon stepped centre-stage and began playing short sharp lines that resembled nothing more or less than the backwards guitar of Jimi Hendrix, the mood, pace and everything seemed to change and revolve him in a crazy falling-down-the-stairs freebop dance. Nice.

If you enjoy a little noisy freedom with your jazz, these regular Thursday nights at Robadors 23 are a real find. Not everybody’s cup of tea, certainly but for fans of experimentation with a high level of musical integrity, it’s a joy, pure and simple.

(For some great photos of this session by Dani Alvarez, go to http://wayyoulooktonight.wordpress.com/2014/11/28/sessio-a-23-robadors-27112014/)

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