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Estraven: Ignored Advice

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Estraven: Ignored Advice
South London band Estraven's debut album is a pleasure and a breath of fresh air: a novel chunk of acoustic jazz which avoids what has become, in 2022, the South London scene's default focus on grooves and dancefloors. Ignored Advice ploughs its own furrow.

The young piano-less quartet is led by bassist and composer Chris Hyde-Harrison and completed by tenor saxophonist Duncan Eagles, drummer Matt Parkinson and French-born guitarist Alban Claret, who plays an electric instrument with minimal use of pedals and effects.

One might call the music modern straight-ahead except that it is not straight-ahead but intricate and sophisticated. And fear not, Hyde-Harrison never tries to be clever: Ignored Advice wears its erudition lightly.

Hyde-Harrison's composing is influenced by his study of the Arabic maqam tradition, which resembles the European conception of modes but employs tricky rhythmic structures. The influence is subtle; there is nothing explicitly Middle Eastern about Ignored Advice. As an arranger, Hyde-Harrison has a penchant for fast-paced unison theme statements which require considerable dexterity from the quartet. If you enjoy the looser and less precisely arranged music of tenor saxophonist Josephine Davies' acoustic trio, beloved of this parish, you may enjoy Estraven, too. Hyde-Harrison is onto something; roll on album number two.

Track Listing

Invocation Incantation; Letters From The Frontline; Ignored Advice; A Voice Beneath; Safe Hex; Pariah's Return; Last Mahou Shoujo.

Personnel

Chris Hyde-Harrison: bass, acoustic; Duncan Eagles: saxophone; Alban Claret: guitar, electric; Matt Parkinson: drums.

Album information

Title: Ignored Advice | Year Released: 2022 | Record Label: Self Produced


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