Reunion live in London

by Trevor Watts & Peter Knight

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1.
56:25

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Barry Witherden's review of Reunion in The Wire magazine:


Trevor Watts & Peter Knight
Reunion: Live in London (Hi4Head CD)

'This was recorded in July 1999 in a room over a pub in Islington with an audience of some 20 souls. That sounds like a very large proportion of the gigs I went to during my years in London. At some of them the group really did outnumber the customers, many of whom usually turned out to be family or friends of the musicians anyway. From the standpoint of financial viability that's all bad, but it does mean that there is a special intimacy about your average Improv gig, a quality which is strongly in evidence here. The two men had known each other and often performed together in the late 70s and through most of the 80s, when Knight was the fiddler with Steeleye Span and Watts was nurturing Moire Music and the Drum Orchestra after stints with such influential bands as The Spontaneous Music Ensemble, Stan Tracey's Tentakles and his own elastic-sized group Amalgam. At this reunion, after a ten year gap, they decided not to rehearse or even discuss the music beforehand - to engage in pure Improv, in fact.

Despite the very different types of music each man was mainly associated with, their playing at this session is astonishingly homogenous, and their command of the entire range of their instruments' technical possibilities is impressive. There are many moments when it is very difficult to determine who is playing what - perhaps not so surprising if you remember that Adolphe Sax developed the saxophone family in order to provide marching bands with a substitute for strings.

Reunion is a single 56 minute performance but, seamless though it is, it passes through several different territories, including fairly standard Improv mutterings, abstract sonic soundscapes, caustic post-bop, episodes of beautiful, elegant, emotionally affecting melodic invention, and almost mystical passages of mesmerising rhythms, which meld echoes of minimalism with African and Asian traditions. In short, master musicians at the height of their powers.'

John Fordham's review in The Guardian is here: www.guardian.co.uk/culture/2008/aug/29/jazz?gusrc=rss&feed=music

credits

released January 22, 2016

Trevor Watts - alto & soprano saxophones; Peter Knight - violin; mastered at Arc Studios, Hastings Photo by Ian Walden; design by Wes Richardson
All music by Trevor Watts & Peter Knight HFHCD007 Thanks also to Lawrence Stanley

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