Home » Jazz Articles » Album Review » Cath Roberts & Olie Brice: Conduit


Cath Roberts & Olie Brice: Conduit


View read count
Cath Roberts & Olie Brice: Conduit
Do not let the length fool you. Clocking in at just under thirty minutes Conduits by the UK duo of Cath Roberts and Olie Brice is a full meal. During the Covid lockdown, the two musicians recorded the music in two separate locations, but also in real time. Utilizing special software called JackTrip, which eliminates the dreaded internet delay, the pair was able to fashion this seamless recording session. Maybe the separate locales necessitated closer listening by the musicians. Here, this is quite evident.

Roberts, a baritone saxophonist who regularly performs with electronics, sticks to her horn here and Brice's double bass maintains an old school sound, mining deep resonances. All this music is improvised. Opening with "Pipework," Roberts sets out in search of a melody, casting a bluesy ballad against Brice's plucked orotund notes. The bassist shifts to his bow as Roberts turns the intensity dial up a few notches, matching energy for energy, followed by the pair in an almost step for step march. "Peering" is all about edges. Both musicians exercise their instrument's periphery, Roberts casting low notes to match her upper register's borders and Brice skimming and diving across his double bass with bow in hand. He taps out percussive notes and growls, sounding not unlike his woodwind partner. Roberts' vocalizing saxophone ends the track with a breathy coda. The final "Buoyancy Chamber" captures the cooperative essence of this improvising duo. The music flows seamlessly with a certain relaxed nonchalance, one you might not expect from free jazz.

Track Listing

Pipework; Peering; Buoyancy Chamber.


Cath Roberts
saxophone, baritone
Olie Brice
bass, acoustic

Album information

Title: Conduit | Year Released: 2022 | Record Label: Relative Pitch Records



Support All About Jazz

Get the Jazz Near You newsletter All About Jazz has been a pillar of jazz since 1995, championing it as an art form and, more importantly, supporting the musicians who create it. Our enduring commitment has made "AAJ" one of the most culturally important websites of its kind, read by hundreds of thousands of fans, musicians and industry figures every month.

How You Can Help

To expand our coverage even further and develop new means to foster jazz discovery and connectivity we need your help. You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky ads plus provide access to future articles for a full year. This winning combination will vastly improve your AAJ experience and allow us to vigorously build on the pioneering work we first started in 1995. So enjoy an ad-free AAJ experience and help us remain a positive beacon for jazz by making a donation today.


Sax QT (Lorraine) 2022
Anthony Braxton Saxophone Quartet
Linda Sikhakhane


Threeway with special guest John Etheridge

Get more of a good thing!

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories, our special offers, and upcoming jazz events near you.