Thursday 11th September - Bonington Theatre
REVIEW – by Trudie Squires
BRISTLING with new ideas, bursting with energy and erupting great enthusiasm, jazz group Killer Shrimp, co-led by trumpeter Damon Brown and tenor-saxophonist Ed Jones, opened the new Jazzsteps season at the Bonington with a storming set. Before the session started I was concerned that the absence of a piano in a classic hard-bop line-up would not achieve the correct balance, but I had not reckoned on the abilities of Mark Hodgson, Killer Shrimp's bass player, whose profusion of notes, chords and agility easily made up for the lack of a piano.
The two front liners were no less than outstanding, creative musicians; Brown's golden toned (sometimes growling) flugelhorn contrasted beautifully with Jones' robust tone on tenor-sax. Their powerful ensemble playing was rich and thick and sounded at times the equivalent of four or five instruments. The group were featuring a new drummer, Alyn Kosker; gifted with a fiery, pugnacious technique, but an impeccable timekeeper and formidable soloist.
After an opening 12-bar blues introduced by bass player Hodgson and played with an authentic "Blue Note" sound the group included in its programme many original tunes, mostly penned by Damon Brown. Both he and Jones blended nicely on My Deposit while on the standard Stella By Starlight the softer toned flugel contrasted sharply with Jones' passionate, razor-edged tenor.
A great start to the new Jazzsteps' season and a glance at the programme reveals there is certainly more to come.
The Killer Shrimp article is now live off our homepage and can be found here http://www.leftlion.co.uk/articles.cfm/id/2286