Category Archives: Gigging

Colin Webster Large Ensemble – First Meeting

Out now on Raw Tonk is First Meeting, the debut release from Colin Webster’s new large ensemble. Featuring an array of great improvisers – it’s a pleasure to be a part of it. The recording is from our gig last year at Cafe Oto. Have a listen….

Expanding Fixed Freedoms performance at City

Over the past few months I’ve enjoyed being a part of Expanding Fixed Freedoms, a new project led by Tullis Rennie. Tullis’ solo album Fixed Freedoms was released last year on Matthew Herbert’s label Accidental Jnr Records, part of their Room 2 series focusing on electronic music outside the club mainstream. Now Tullis has assembled a group of additional musicians to add an acoustic element to the original material, and we’ve been working collectively to reimagine the music and sound with a view to creating something new. With Tullis on live electronics, the new group adds Preetha Narayanan on violin, Tara Franks on cello, Dee Byrne on alto saxophone and me on baritone saxophone.

It’s been a really interesting process, culminating this weekend with a performance and recording session. You can hear the music live this Friday 2nd June in the Performance Space at City, University of London: tickets are free and you can reserve your place on the City concerts website, where you’ll also find more information and the event details.

TREAD INTO MULCH

Another gig for the duo of Graham Dunning and me is coming up this month, at the squelchily-named TREAD INTO MULCH series, run by Paul Margree. The gig is happening at Hundred Years Gallery on Friday 26th May; we’re sharing the bill with two solo sets from Paul (as Ivy Nostrum) and John Macedo. I’m really enjoying the way the duo is developing, and looking forward to another outing!

City University Experimental Ensemble

The early part of this year so far has brought a few new things for me, and one of them is an exciting new role as leader of City University Experimental Ensemble (CUEE). I’m running the student group for this Spring term, exploring group improvisation alongside Sharon Gal’s Études. This deck of cards is a ‘set of scores and propositions’ for performance, and is full of provocations, instructions, statements and suggestions (not to mention beautiful colours) that are forming a basis for us to create some new music together.

The first time I worked with CUEE was as a guest artist in 2016, shortly after it was set up by my long-time collaborator Tullis Rennie. The ensemble performed my pieces Off-World and March Of The Egos (I can’t remember who that title refers to…) at IKLECTIK, and the recording was released on vinyl by multi.modal. CUEE have returned to the venue many times since then, and this year’s end of term concert is happening there, at IKLECTIK, on Wednesday 12th April. It should be a great evening of brand new improvised music, alongside the City University Field Recording Ensemble – and you can now reserve a free place at the concert.

Creatures of Tooth debut gig / electronics duo at BRÅK

I haven’t been online very much recently as project work is taking up most of my time, but I’m jumping back on today as I have two nice gigs coming up this weekend!

Firstly on Friday 17th February at Lewisham Arthouse it’s the first outing of Creatures of Tooth. This is a brand new duo project with Tom Ward on clarinets and me on live electronics! Doors are 7.30pm, it’s £5 on the door and byob, and we’re sharing the bill with LOFE…

Then the next night, Saturday 18th February, BRÅK is back at waterintobeer with a great lineup. I’m on electronics again, this time in a duo with Bill Thompson – the second gig of this collaboration. My plan is to plan lyra-8 synth only, and Bill will bring his new laptop setup.

Looking forward to both of these!

New BRÅK dates for early 2023

A new season of BRÅK is upon us once again! This month I’ll be collaborating with Khabat Abas (cello) for the first time, on baritone. In February it’s the return of my long-running duo with Benedict Taylor, but we’re going to try it out with me on live electronics. And then I’ll be taking the electronics back there again for the April gig, with Graham Dunning. Should be a nice cluster of gigs: lots of lovely guests. Join us in the shop

December gigs and AAO hcmf// project

December is upon us, and having just finished a big project (of which more later), it already feels like my 2022 is over – but in fact I have a few nice gigs in London this month. A quick rundown…

Sunday 4 December – with Christoph Gallio, Dominic Lash and Andrew Lisle at Hundred Years Gallery

Swiss saxophonist Christoph Gallio has spent a chunk of time based in London this year, and I was very happy to be asked to join him for this afternoon set at the gallery. With a heavyweight Lash/Lisle rhythm section! More info on the HYG website.

Friday 9 December – new live electronics duo with Bill Thompson at LUME

Also at HYG is the last LUME gig of 2022, next Friday. My set will be the debut performance of a new live electronics collaboration with sound artist Bill Thompson. I’ve just added a Lyra-8 analogue synthesiser to my live electronics setup (see above – the huge one), and this will be the first time I’ve taken it out on a gig. Bill and I had a great session together earlier this week so I’m looking forward to playing again.

Saturday 10 December – Jason Yarde benefit gig, Cafe Oto and The Vortex

Fantastic saxophone player Jason Yarde is recovering from a stroke. For this benefit gig, Orphy Robinson has assembled a cast of characters from across the London improv scene for an afternoon improvised music relay. Players will move between Cafe Oto and The Vortex in freeform ensembles. More info and link soon…

Saturday 17 December – BRÅK Christmas Special with Charles Hayward

My last gig of the year is the BRÅK festive special. We’ll be at waterintobeer for a festive night of improv, and my duo partner is formidable drummer Charles Hayward! Tom will be joined by Sam Andreae, and Matt Cargill of Sly & The Family Drone with play a duo set with Colin. It promises to be a special night!

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Australian Art Orchestra hcmf// ‘Fresh Water – Salt Water’ project in Melbourne and Huddersfield

Over the last few months I’ve had the privilege of being involved in a pretty amazing international collaborative project with the Australian Art Orchestra. Co-produced by AAO and Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, Fresh Water – Salt Water is a new work centred around the music of Yolŋu songmen Daniel and David Wilfred, with guest UK artists Mandhira De Saram and myself along with AAO musicians Martin Ng, Helen Svoboda, Aviva Endean and Peter Knight. In early November Mandhira and I travelled to Melbourne, where the ensemble worked together to devise the new music. We then performed the piece at Melbourne Recital Centre (above), before recovening in the UK later in the month to present it at Bates Mill in Huddersfield for hcmf//. It’s been an incredible and very creatively stimulating experience! There’s a lot to process. I loved working with everyone and hope it can lead to more collaboration in the future. In the mean time you can read more about the project and the artists on the AAO website.