Jasper Høiby's Fellow Creatures Unleash Their Inner Beast At The Spin, Oxford

 Fellow-Creatures

Jasper Høiby's new band announced themselves with a bass riff like a drum roll and a near fanfare from the frontline. It was a prelude to what was nearly two hours of high-quality music that just flew by.

Høiby is well-known as one third of hugely popular and critically acclaimed trio Phronesis. With his Fellow Creatures band he wanted to fulfil "a dream... to start a larger ensemble... in an attempt to cover different ground". Høiby was also inspired by Naomi Klein's book on the environmental crisis, This Changes Everything, and by the memory of his late sister. Written by him for a quintet with a frontline of sax and trumpet, the group's eponymous debut album garnered much praise on its release last year.

Tonight's set consisted of almost the complete album played in near enough the same running order, but the music is a different, ahem, animal when performed live, so much so that the band are going to record a live version during the final gigs on this tour. Alterations in the formation of the band meant that it was inevitable there would be differences. Jim Gold on alto joined the stellar frontline of Mark Lockheart's lyrical and occasional honking tenor sax and the rich purity of Laura Jurd's trumpet, making the quintet a sextet and the sound of the unison-playing even more glorious. Also, the excellent and versatile Will Barry was on an electric keyboard rather than piano and more to the fore than on the album, introducing a touch of funk and prog to proceedings.

But the changes went still further, with the band pushing and probing into what were often much extended explorations of Høiby's songs, while still being true to their central motifs. Opener, 'Folk Song', was the extreme example, clocking in at about 20-minutes, as compared to six on the album. Yet the flow of fresh ideas combined with the heft, subtly and richness of the sonorities meant there was no flab on this or other songs. The angular and wild attack perhaps took the Fellow Creatures closer to the spirit of Phronesis than expected, and with sudden bursts of improv there were moments where they sounded downright angry. These more aggressive passages, however, were always resolved, generally by diminuendo finishes and Høiby's love of melody and perhaps also his optimism steering the music into calmer waters. There was much joy in this playing too. The delightful 'Song for Bees', with it's underlying South African vibe, just danced along. 'Before', a sinuous duo between Lockheart 's tenor and Høiby's bass, was delicious and the bright witty staccato rhythm of 'Suddenly, Everyone' skipped beneath flowing horn lines, with everything was framed by Corrie Dick's inventive drumming.

If the album was partially about Høiby's skill as a composer, this gig demonstrated his skill at working with an ensemble as an arranger. With Phronesis' tunes now having been arranged for big band by Julian Argülles (see Jazzwise, April 2017), it may only be a matter of time until Høiby himself tries his hand at writing for a big band.

– Colin May

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website

If you do not change browser settings, you consent to continue. Learn more

I understand

Breaking News

Shabaka Hutchings, Donny McCaslin and The Rolling Stones among Jazz FM Awards winners

Shabaka Hutchings, Donny McCaslin and Th…

The fourth edition of the Jazz FM Awards, presented by...

Read More.....
Special London Screening Of Ascenseur Pour L'échafaud

Special London Screening Of Ascenseur Po…

As part of the global celebrations for International Jazz Day...

Read More.....
Norma Winstone’s Interplay line-up for Leamington Spa

Norma Winstone’s Interplay line-up for L…

To coincide with International Jazz Day, Leamington Spa-based promoters In...

Read More.....
Alice Zawadzki and Gwyneth Herbert sing with Sam Lee’s Nightingales

Alice Zawadzki and Gwyneth Herbert sing …

Adventurous Mercury Prize-nominated folk singer Sam Lee's nature-bound concert series...

Read More.....
Empirical Pop-Up Jazz Lounge Bops to Birmingham, London and Liverpool

Empirical Pop-Up Jazz Lounge Bops to Bir…

MOBO Award-winning Brit-jazz four-piece Empirical are set to take their...

Read More.....
Freddie Gavita Quartet Make Lasting Statement At Transient Launch

Freddie Gavita Quartet Make Lasting Stat…

Ostensibly a CD launch gig to promote his new album...

Read More.....
Jazz Em Agosto 2017 Line-Up Announced

Jazz Em Agosto 2017 Line-Up Announced

  Lisbon's annual summit of sonic adventure Jazz em Agosto returns...

Read More.....
Sounds of Denmark dances back to Dean Street’s Pizza Express Jazz Club

Sounds of Denmark dances back to Dean St…

Making a splash with its inaugural weeklong run in 2016...

Read More.....
Lakeside Luminaries: Møster!, Ståle Storløkken and Sheila Jordan all shine at Vossa Jazz

Lakeside Luminaries: Møster!, Ståle Stor…

  To begin with, Vossa Jazz has the advantage of its tranquil...

Read More.....
The Necks Head For Brighton

The Necks Head For Brighton

Those fabulous folk at Dictionary Pudding Promotions and Brighton Alternative...

Read More.....
 Auand Label's Bisceglie Breakout Strikes Right Balance Between Freedom And Finesse

Auand Label's Bisceglie Breakout Strike…

  Since its inception in 2001 the Auand imprint has emerged...

Read More.....
Jazz-Rock Guitar Genius Allan Holdsworth Dies Age 70

Jazz-Rock Guitar Genius Allan Holdsworth…

The passing of Allan Holdsworth on Easter day has robbed...

Read More.....
Kamasi Washington Divulges Truth With Young Turks Global Deal

Kamasi Washington Divulges Truth With Yo…

Hot-shot saxophonist and bandleader Kamasi Washington has announced the release...

Read More.....
Freddie Gavita for Ronnie’s album launch – Transient Video Exclusive

Freddie Gavita for Ronnie’s album launch…

Fast rising British trumpeter Freddie Gavita is set to launch...

Read More.....
Ethan Iverson to leave The Bad Plus and Orrin Evans steps in

Ethan Iverson to leave The Bad Plus and …

Minneapolis piano trio pioneers The Bad Plus have announced, after...

Read More.....
Mancio/Broadbent Seduce With Sensuous Songbook At Ronnie's

Mancio/Broadbent Seduce With Sensuous So…

Introduced by the great Ian Shaw, a sold out Ronnie...

Read More.....
Jazz FM Awards to honour Charlie Watts and feature performances from Donny McCaslin, Georgie Fame and Laura Mvula

Jazz FM Awards to honour Charlie Watts a…

This year's Jazz FM Awards are now set to take...

Read More.....
ACT 25 Magic Years Birthday Concert gets Berlin buzzing

ACT 25 Magic Years Birthday Concert gets…

Twenty-five years and still going strong is some achievement, especially...

Read More.....
Sun Ra Arkestra surf the spaceways at Lewes Con Club

Sun Ra Arkestra surf the spaceways at Le…

  It's a long way from Chicago's East Side to the...

Read More.....
Jasper Høiby's Fellow Creatures Unleash Their Inner Beast At The Spin, Oxford

Jasper Høiby's Fellow Creatures Unleash …

  Jasper Høiby's new band announced themselves with a bass riff...

Read More.....
Nitin Sawhney and Rachel Cohen celebrate Abram Wilson Foundation's fifth anniversary with gala gig

Nitin Sawhney and Rachel Cohen celebrate…

The Abram Wilson Foundation, the charity set up by the...

Read More.....
Kamasi Washington and Miles Mosley bring West Coast heat to Love Supreme

Kamasi Washington and Miles Mosley bring…

Los Angeles tenor titan Kamsi Washington, double bass dude Miles...

Read More.....
Brad Mehldau/Chris Thile, Tomasz Stańko and Bill Laurance added to EFG London Jazz Fest line-up

Brad Mehldau/Chris Thile, Tomasz Stańko …

The 25th EFG London Jazz Festival continues its early build...

Read More.....
Charles Hayward, Sven-Åke Johansson and Weasel Walter represent percussive sub-current at Sonic Protest festival in Paris

Charles Hayward, Sven-Åke Johansson and …

  Sonic Protest runs its core festival across various Parisian venues...

Read More.....
Shobaleader One frenzied and fired-up at Village Underground

Shobaleader One frenzied and fired-up at…

You can tell a lot about a man by the...

Read More.....
Morning Ain't Broken: Cline Meets Horn For Small Hours Summit On RSD Day Single

Morning Ain't Broken: Cline Meets Horn F…

Nels Cline contributes the one and only outtake from his Lovers...

Read More.....
Partikel power-up with Counteraction - video exclusive 'Lanterns'

Partikel power-up with Counteraction - v…

Sax-bass-drums trio Partikel return with a new album, Counteraction, set...

Read More.....
Jasper Høiby’s Fellow Creatures, Yazz Ahmed and Dinosaur among the delights at Bristol Jazz Festival

Jasper Høiby’s Fellow Creatures, Yazz Ah…

Now in its fifth year the Bristol International Jazz and...

Read More.....
Lauren Dalrymple celebrates 18 Years of the SoFF Music Jam in Brixton

Lauren Dalrymple celebrates 18 Years of …

Dynamic jazz singer Lauren Dalrymple has hosted her SoFF Music...

Read More.....
Vinyl liaison for lost Thelonious Monk LP for Record Store Day release

Vinyl liaison for lost Thelonious Monk L…

Thelonious Monk's only ever soundtrack recording, for the provocative 1959...

Read More.....
Danilo Pérez, Christian Scott and Gonzalo Rubalcaba majestic and magnetic at Haiti’s Festival International de Jazz de Port-au-Prince

Danilo Pérez, Christian Scott and Gonzal…

Port-au-Prince is one of the most intoxicating places I've ever...

Read More.....
James Brandon Lewis Trio Dazzle On UK Debut At Ronnie Scott's

James Brandon Lewis Trio Dazzle On UK De…

  After a stellar performance for a sold-out audience John McLaughlin...

Read More.....
Soft Machine, Ezra Collective and Ella tribute for Elgar Room jazz nights

Soft Machine, Ezra Collective and Ella t…

The Elgar Room, the Royal Albert Hall's highly accommodating 200-capacity...

Read More.....
John McLaughlin blasts off with the 4th Dimension at Ronnie Scott’s

John McLaughlin blasts off with the 4th …

The weeklong Jazzwise 20th anniversary celebrations kicked off in spectacular...

Read More.....
Awkward: A Short Film About Evan Parker

Awkward: A Short Film About Evan Parker

Evan Parker draws back the veil on the challenges of...

Read More.....
Just The Jazz Ticket: Tomorrow's Warriors Unveil New Music Education Project

Just The Jazz Ticket: Tomorrow's Warrior…

  Award-wining jazz development company Tomorrow's Warrior's launches its new music...

Read More.....


 

Qobuz-ad

 

Subcribe To Jazzwise

Advertisement

Call 0800 137201 to subscribe or click here to email the subscriptions team

Get in touch

Jazzwise Magazine,
St. Judes Church,
Dulwich Road, 
Herne Hill,
London, SE24 0PD.

0208 677 0012

Latest Tweets

Shabaka Hutchings, Donny McCaslin and The Rolling Stones among Jazz FM Awards winners https://t.co/GafKydbP1T https://t.co/gwcz21AD0W
Follow Us - @Jazzwise
RT @jazzfm: Winer of Soul Act of the Year sponsored by @rcsukltd is @lauramvula ! Listen Live: https://t.co/lccUiycpai #OnlyTheSharpest htt…
Follow Us - @Jazzwise
RT @jazzfm: Winner of Jazz Innovation of the Year sponsored by @Mishcon_de_Reya is @jaimeobrown Listen Live: https://t.co/lccUiycpai #onlyt…
Follow Us - @Jazzwise
RT @jazzfm: Winner of the Instrumentalist of the Year sponsored by Rathbones is @Nikkipianoyeoh Listen Live: https://t.co/lccUiycpai #OnlyT…
Follow Us - @Jazzwise
RT @vortexjazz: Coming soon…CHES SMITH/CRAIG TABORN/MAT MANERI MON/15/MAY https://t.co/xWC4ViVUps @londonjazz @jazzlondonlive @Jazzwise ht…
Follow Us - @Jazzwise

Newsletter

Sign up to the Jazzwise monthly E-Newsletter