COMPOSERS: Jasper Høiby
ALBUM TITLE: Jasper Høiby
WORKS: Fellow Creatures
PERFORMER: Jasper Høiby (bass), Mark Lockheart (sax), Laura Jurd (trumpet & flugelhorn), Will Barry (piano), Corrie Dick (drums)
CATALOGUE NO: EDN1075
Høiby built his reputation on the fine work of his principal project, Phronesis, but has wanted to stretch himself by writing for additional melody instruments. He has made good use of the opportunity afforded by this album, and his writing is well served by Barry, Jurd and Lockheart, who take his lines and fly with them.
The varied compositions cohere extremely well as a programme. Some, including the bustling title track, recall Herbie Hancock classics like Maiden Voyage, which is high praise. The opening ‘Folk Song’ begins with a stark, percussive bottom-register piano chord and a sparse but almost declamatory tune on the bass, simple but utterly riveting, building to give the impression of a larger ensemble: could there be echoes of Høiby’s legendary compatriots Cadentia Nova Danica? Several tracks display a gentler yet equally emotional side to Høiby’s imagination. On this evidence he deserves more chances to work with horn-led groups.