3

Alex Hitchcock: All Good Things

Roger Farbey By

Sign in to view read count
Alex Hitchcock: All Good Things
The Alex Hitchcock Quintet's first record, Live at the London and Cambridge Jazz Festivals, was released in 2018 as an EP on Mondo Tunes. But at around 40 minutes this could easily have passed muster as a pukka LP. It was also a very impressive debut indeed, captured live from gigs performed in 2016 and 2017 at London and Cambridge respectively. Londoner Hitchcock attended the North London Weekend Arts College (WAC) where several British jazz stars began their careers, including Courtney Pine and Julian Joseph. He studied English Literature at Cambridge University where he became director of its jazz orchestra. But following Cambridge he studied jazz at the Royal Academy of Music, graduating in 2016.

The opener "Hamburg 2010," is prototypical of this exquisitely subtle collection of tunes. It is characterised by its warm ensemble passages, harmonically evinced by the twin horns. Hitchcock's opening salvo on tenor is compelling, as is James Copus' mellifluous flugelhorn solo. Hitchcock and Copus engage in an exciting exchange of lines on "Möbius" before Will Barry consolidates the piece with a buoyant acoustic piano foray. A sonic change is heard on "Mint" with Barry switching to the tintinnabulation of a Fender Rhodes, over which the front line establishes a labyrinthine theme. Here Hitchcock's tenor solo is satisfyingly confident and wide-ranging. The deceptively sedate start to "Adjective Animal" suddenly gives way at around 2'28" to a more urgent dynamic, embellished by a rapid, serpentine ensemble head.

Joe Downard's bass solo on "A38" is augmented by his singing in unison to the notes, a technique favoured by Major Holley, Slam Stewart and Coleridge Goode. On the ensuing "Sorry Not Sorry," Downard's resonant pizzicato bass line provides vital anchorage, contrasting sharply with the fast-paced sax and trumpet unison lines. Dominated by Barry's lustrous acoustic piano, the closer is a longer version of "Context," previously heard on Live at the London and Cambridge Jazz Festivals. All Good Things is the clearest indicator to date of the stratospheric trajectory on which this super-talented quintet is indubitably heading. But in stark opposition to the truncated aphorism of its title, this album represents the beginning of what is bound to be a happily burgeoning future.

Track Listing

Hamburg 2010; Mobius; Mint; Adjective Animal; A38; Sorry Not Sorry; Context.

Personnel

Alex Hitchcock: tenor sax; James Copus: trumpet, flugelhorn; Will Barry: piano, Fender Rhodes; Joe Downard: bass; Jay Davis: drums.

Album information

Title: All Good Things | Year Released: 2019 | Record Label: Fresh Sound New Talent

Post a comment about this album

Tags

Shop Amazon

More

Read When You Find It
When You Find It
Arthur White and Merge
Read Rainbow Baby
Rainbow Baby
Cathlene Pineda
Read An Open Dialogue
An Open Dialogue
Linda Sikhakhane
Read Rah! Rah!
Rah! Rah!
The Claire Daly Band
Read Artlessly Falling
Artlessly Falling
Mary Halvorson's Code Girl
Read Hi-Fly
Hi-Fly
Howard University Jazz Ensemble
Read And Then It Rained
And Then It Rained
The Michael O'Neill Quartet

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary effort that will help musicians now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the bottom right video ad). Thank you.

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.