Memoria Uno – gettin’ jazzy…

Oriol Roca (drums)
Martín Leiton (bass)
Toni Saigi (piano)
Marcel·li Bayer (bass clarinet, soprano saxophone)
Joan Mas (alto saxophone)
Fernando Brox (flute)
Iván González (conduction)

Another month, another incarnation of Memoria Uno. It’s the free improvisation equivalent of Doctor Who – always the same entity with the same drive but looking and sounding totally different.

This evening featured a smaller than usual unit, with the rare inclusion of piano (only the second performance this year to have one) and whether due to the preferences of the players or Iván González’s own whim, this was definitely the hard bop version. A bit of judicious editing and I could have been listening to slices from the free-er end of the Blue Note or Atlantic catalogue during the 1950s-60s golden age of jazz.

…swinging bass and drum grooves, plenty of Tyner-ish block chords at the keyboard, cascading solos from the frontline. It put me in mind of a cut up version of Mingus around the time of “Pithecanthropus Erectus”. Add a dash of flute and bass clarinet from early-60s Dolphy (is there any other kind?) and you’re there.

A departure from the usual pure sound experimentation, but a fun one.

On a rare (for me) critical note, I think Memoria Uno need a new venue. Don’t get me wrong, I love Robadors 23. But it’s a bar with a stage and not a theatre. A distinctive feature of any Memoria Uno concert is the range of dynamics – from thunderstorm-loud to breath-soft – and the background noise often masks the subtler details and nuances of the sound. Rant over. 😉