Friday, 24 June 2016

KOAN 3: Hapsburg Braganza / Paul Taylor / Zassõ Fukei / Jewel - Live at The Globe, Newcastle [24th June 2016]

[2016.06.24] Tom Hollingworth, for NARC Magazine.

For this concluding night of the KOAN trilogy, curator Martin Donkin invited some personal favourites to guide this special series around improvisation home.  

Donkin and Davey Sax (Jewel) set about calibrating ears for this more gentle instalment, with a continuous piece of saxophone / electric guitar improvisation based around Śūnyatā. The rising tides of sound inside were tonic, but mixed with the Referendum rain outside the windowpane.
After preparing the space meticulously with an array of tools, Zassõ Fukei played with the idea of communication; opposing immediate moments (cymbal-head-hit) with lengthy unveilings of written poetry, using looped music and a guitar-paintbrush.

    “the lengths we go / stone / upon stone / to remain / apart”
Introduced as someone who should be “performing on the stages around Europe,” Paul Taylor’s face was bashful, however, such a sentiment was soon proven warranted as the keys took over his form, ingeniously mixing a multitude of influences including Debussy’s Impressionism, and 70’s Fusion.
As Phil Begg (Hapsburg Braganza) took a seat with his five-string electric, the accumulated warmth upstairs at The Globe rested gently on the faces, and, combined with the dying light, welcomed dreaming. Begg’s shimmering instrumentals lead from Lute-esque dances to slower pieces, evoking such images as sprawling cornfields, perhaps. Turning further to more abstract compositions, his confidence realised itself here, playing with the imperfections.

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