Ant Law - Entanglement
(33JAZZ230. CD Review by Chris Parker)
Those wishing to read guitarist/composer Ant Law’s explanation of the title of this, his debut album as a leader (and his views on ‘Perfect Fourths’ tuning etc.), should access the Artist Profile recently conducted by Rob Edgar; you don’t, however, need to know anything about either nuclear physics or the mysteries of the low E flat to enjoy the direct, pulsing energy of Entanglement.
Bustling power, judiciously harnessed with elegance and poise, characterises the eight originals and one jazz classic (Coltrane’s ‘Satellite’) that make up this album, on which the intelligent, cogent guitar playing of the fluent, eloquent Law is set against the fierce saxophones of Michael Chillingworth and the thoughtful but slyly robust piano playing of John Turville.
It is the sheer class of the rhythm section (bassist Tom Farmer, drummer James Maddren), however, that is the icing on the cake: whether driving the band through the pleasantly jerky, hard-edged opener, ‘Kanda Jhati’, building the surge beneath ‘Laurvin Glaslowe’ or ticking briskly through the Coltrane composition, Farmer and Maddren are the heartbeat and breath of a vigorous but subtle group sound perfectly calibrated to serve the needs of Law’s often tricksy pieces, which are rhythmically complex enough to stretch both performers and listeners, but are, at the same time, bright, punchy and memorable.
The band’s present UK tour (London date the Pizza Express, 11 March) should be well worth checking out.