Cd Review: 4 Sided Triangle

4 Sided Triangle
(Pig Records PIG 02. CD Review by Chris Parker)

This eponymous album from Bristol-based saxophonist Kevin Figes’s 4 Sided Triangle is his third as a leader, and features, alongside his baritone and alto, the fender rhodes of Dan Moore, the guitar of Mike Outram and the drumming of Daisy Palmer. He himself cites Miles Davis’s Live Evil and the recordings of Soft Machine as crucial influences, and the album certainly draws on rock and funk as much as on the electric jazz of another cited influence, Chris Potter’s Underground (a band featuring Wayne Krantz).

Closer to home, 4 Sided Triangle explore territory opened up by the likes of Centre-Line, but Figes’s band’s overall approach, courtesy mainly of Palmer’s rock drumming (which states the beat in the rock manner rather than implying or playing round it in the jazz manner), and made overt in his choice of Badfinger’s ‘Name of the Game’ as the album’s only non-original, is more reminiscent of, say, Get the Blessing or Guillemots than it is of the jazz-rock of Russell Van Den Berg and co.

Both Figes and (especially) the spiky Outram fire off some fierce solos over the solid rhythm-section work of Palmer and Moore, and Figes’s baritone sound in particular imbues the tracks on which it is employed with a pleasantly grainy sonorousness; overall, though, this is probably an album which will be more appreciated by rock fans branching out into jazz than by listeners coming in the other direction.

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