Matthew Kilner – Tenor Sax
Barry Middleton – Piano
Pete Lowit – Double Bass
Fraser Peterkin – Drums
This was a welcome return to a tight band that have played together long enough to be able to rely on each other and yet are still able to surprise each other and the audience. They played a nice mixture of Coltrane, Miles Davis and Wayne Shorter tunes, plus John Carisi’s “Israel” and Cedar Walton’s “Bolivia”.
As always the tunes were seen as taking-off points with the band’s ethos allowing individual players the freedom to follow their own direction. Barry Middleton’s intro to “Nardis” was a case in point, where he explored at length some of the exotic implications of the tune, finally leading inevitably into the tenor’s main tune. The way the other players subtly supported him is typical of this band’s empathy and ability to spontaneously pick up on a creative idea. That’s a lot of words to say that this band needs your full attention.
The evening included Tommy Flanagan’s “Freight Train”, Wayne Shorter’s “Fee Fi Fo Fum”, “Juju” and “Speak no Evil”, Miles Davis’ “Nardis” and “Milestones”, Thelonius Monk’s “I Mean You” and Coltrane’s “Chasing the Trane” which included a fiery tenor solo supported only by driving drums.
Matthew Kilner was on excellent form both as a soloist and as a supporting player behind, for example, Pete Lowit’s creative bass solos, especially on “Israel” and Barry Middleton’s take on “Milestones” and “Juju”.
Fraser Peterkin was here, there and everywhere, driving, accenting, colouring and framing an exciting evening of jazz improvisation. As is so often the case, I went home marvelling at the unique platform for creative music making that is Moray Jazz Club.