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Spring Heel Jack: Live

After two fascinating collaborations with jazz musicians on Thirsty Ear’s Blue Series-Amassed with a group of mainly European improvisers; Masses with an American ensemble-Spring Heel Jack took to the road earlier this year on an eight-date tour around England for the Contemporary Music Network. The live group was a slightly slimmed down version of the Amassed lineup, with John Coxon and Ashley Wales (Spring Heel Jack) on electronics, Evan Parker on tenor, Matthew Shipp on Fender Rhodes, Jason Spaceman on guitar, William Parker on bass and Han Bennink on drums.

Live comprises two sections: “Part 1” from the fourth night and “Part 2” from the opening night, in Bath. I was at the latter performance, fascinated to see how the project would translate to a live setting and to see how Coxon and Wales, two producers best known for their experimental drum ‘n’ bass, were going to relinquish control of the minute particulars of their studio work to the impulse of the moment. While I went fearing a car crash, Spring Heel Jack was hot-wired for a joyride.

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