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gaNNets + Falco Subbuteo feat. John Pope - Wed Jan 25, 2012 | 08:00 pm
Admission £ 7 ( £ 5 concessions)
Leader Fyfe Dangerfield is better known as frontman for indie pop group Guillemots and more recently as a solo artist, but his enthusiasm for improvised music goes back almost a decade to his first meeting with clarinet virtuoso Chris Cundy. They played a Jazz Services tour with the short lived 'Transmissions of Not', which - after meetings with improv veterans Alex Ward, Steve Noble and John Edwards - evolved in 2004 into the first version of gaNNets. Edwards was soon replaced in the bass chair by Dom Lash, and the current line-up became established. Despite Dangerfield's other commitments, the quintet has toured on a number of occasions, and issue their debut CD in early 2012.
Alex Ward has described the band's music as positing "an alternative jazz history in which '30s swing developed straight into a combined form of the free jazz and fusion movements, without any of the intervening decades". There is certainly a playful sense of melody and a strong rhythmic propulsion that can evoke elements of pop and cartoon music as much as the mainstream jazz tradition, but the skills, experience and imagination of all five players means that the music constantly takes new and exciting directions.
A short opening set comes from the York-based improvising duo Falco Subbuteo (with Val Persona on violin and Gwilly Edmondez on an assortment of electronic gizmos), on this occasion supplemented by versatile Tyneside bassist John Pope.