The second night of XRIJF ... a night that almost wasn't (at least for me...), but happy it was!
June 24, 2018
Those reading my post yesterday about Day 1 and Twitter will know that I had a car issue yesterday that threatened to delay me getting downtown for the second night of XRIJF. The AC started pouring water into the passenger side of the cabin while we were driving to a graduation party for a friend. Since our house AC went out a couple weeks ago, I thought "oh no, not the car too!). As we happened to be near the dealer, we took it in and luckily it wasn't a big deal. I made it downtown a little late to go to anything early, but managed to catch all the acts I had planned to hear....
A short recap of last night:
- Although I've heard the Bad Plus several times, I made an exception to my XRIJF "rule" as I was looking forward to hearing them with Orrin Evans on piano. Evans recently replaced original Plus pianist Ethan Iverson and I had seen him with his Quartet in NYC a couple of years back and really enjoyed his music. I wanted to hear how (and whether?) he clicked with the BP. He did. The band started off with a burner and moved through a set list that included some of the old tunes and a number from their new album Never Stop II, alternatively quiet and introspective and dynamic and intense. A note about the new Temple Theatre venue. At least to my ears, the sound was great in the space. The Theatre well-handled the BP's music, which moves quickly from soft to the point of a whisper to intense, high volume, walls of sound. Reid Anderson took a quite torturous route involving smart cars and CB radio in announcing the tune "Keep the Bugs Off Your Glass and the Bears Off Your Ass" from their second album These Are the Vistas.
- Next to the UK series at Christ Church for Django Bates Beloved Trio. Bates and his trio had studied the space in Christ Church and selected music to suit that space. It worked. The music, including The Study of Touch, the title track from the Bates' new ECM album, was impressionistic and introspective, and enveloped the sanctuary with intricate patterns of sound. One interesting aside was that the organ in the Christ Church was made in Gothenburg Sweden and Django's bass player Petter Eldh believes his father may have worked on the building that organ.
- Ended up with Iceland’s Sigurdur Flosason with an great quartet at the Lutheran Church. His music is evocative of the natural surroundings of his native land and his saxophone was rich and beautifully played. After the intensity of my first two musical forays on Day 2, this was a welcome and comfortable place to end.
What's on for tonight? Well, lemme see... (open up the XRIJF app, which has made my spreadsheet superfluous...):
- One for All in Kilbourn Hall
- Paradigm Shift with the PS Horns on the Jazz Street Stage (the PShift guys are my buddies and I can't miss their return to playing at the festival).
- Christian Sands Trio at the Montage
I would like to get the Kuara Trio at Lutheran and Beats & Pieces Big Band at the Made in the UK series at Christ Church in, too, but schedule won't work that way.