10/05/2006 Kerstan Mackness - Timeout
Guitarist Jonny Phillips might just be the next big star to emerge from
Collective,the loose confederation of forward-looking musicians that
include the Mercury-
nominated Polar Bear and the hip-punk Jazz outfit Acoustic Ladyland,
But while those
bands embrace electronica, funk and rock influences, Phillips who
played on the Polar Bear
album and who regularly collaborates with folky songstress Julia Biel is
a different beast
altogether. His music is a pastoral, impressionistic mix of soaring
melodies and South
American folklore that strives to create an aural form of magical realism.
beautiful, it sounds simultaneously contemporary and yet centuaries old.
His band Oriole are something of a F-IRE collective supergroup with big
Sebastian Rochford (Polar Bear, Acoustic Ladyland, Fulbourn,
Taversham), cellist Ben Davis
(Julia Biel, Django Bates), Lee Konitz-ish saxophonist Ingrid Laubrock
Vasconcellos), claranetist Idris Rahman (Soothsayers), Danish bass
Christensen (Paul Motion) and Brazilian Percussionist Adriano Adawali
Their new Album 'Migration' is an early contender for jazz release of the
year, a sublime,
slightly unsettling but emotionally rewarding work that draws on folk,
West African and Mediterranean music. Like the Norwegian pianist
Phillips conjures music that is quietly intense, beguilingly beautiful and full
robust tunes that stay with you long after you hear them. Expect
waltzes, gentle samba,
persuasive grooves, poignant themes and uplifting melodies that'll make
you smile, think
and want to dance.
Jonny also co-composed Julia Biels first album Not Alone
and plays guitar for Afro Dub band The Soothsayers
Jonny lives between London and Andelucia-Spain.