Matthew Halsall & The Gondwana Orchestra: Into Forever

Performed by Matthew Halsall (trumpet), Lisa Mallett (flute) and Rachael Gladwin (harp).

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COMPOSERS: Matthew Halsall
LABELS: Gondwana Records
ALBUM TITLE: Matthew Halsall & The Gondwana Orchestra: Into Forever
WORKS: Into Forever
PERFORMER: Matthew Halsall (trumpet), Lisa Mallett (flute), Rachael Gladwin (harp) etc
CATALOGUE NO: GONDCD013

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The Manchester-based composer and trumpeter Matthew Halsall has been at the forefront of the city’s jazz scene, running his own label, Gondwana Records, and propelling local artists into the national limelight. Into Forever comes from a creative pairing with poet/singer Josephine Oniyama, which had its origins in a 2013 commission for Radio 3’s The Verb. With a crystal-clear delivery she explores themes such as motherhood and her soulful style blends seamlessly with Halsall’s regular band, the Gondwana Orchestra. Aside from its vocal strengths, the disc is packed with intriguing instrumentals. Lisa Mallett’s flute lends an otherwordly edge to ‘The Land Of’ and Rachael Gladwin’s harp, a more unusual jazz instrument, brings a shimmering quality, offset by a resonant bass. This formula has worked for Halsall before and his own soaring, breezy trumpet solo on ‘Daan Park’, re-affirms his wide appeal. Neil McKim