Dave De Rose and Dan Nicholls, Plants Heal, DDR Records ****

Highly textural eco-aware electronica sums up Plants Heal in the bare bones of a few words. Whether it's a psychedelic mushroom depicted on the cover artwork or not think yourself suitably ushered in anyway to this wired-up undergrowth. A …

Published: 13 Nov 2021. Updated: 20 days.

Highly textural eco-aware electronica sums up Plants Heal in the bare bones of a few words. Whether it's a psychedelic mushroom depicted on the cover artwork or not think yourself suitably ushered in anyway to this wired-up undergrowth. A drums-keyboards duo in essence fronted by Dave De Rose and Dan Nicholls it's marked by a refusal to dumb down and a healthy aptitude for experimental adventure. The first track is like a long held note and then it's dotted with organic percussion. De Rose is adept at using brittle dings and skittish jolts as he tours around his array of cymbals and drums. He sets up a certain panorama a little like the way Marilyn Mazur provides open-ended settings on some of her more exploratory records. 'Hawthorn' complete with birdsong has like a rainforest backdrop to it and Nicholls' synth forays are thrustingly positive. 'Willow' is far dancier with a flute-like setting on the synth again contributing what could be thought of as an Amazonian vibe. Marius Mathizick adds guitar and effects on the throbbing 'Penstemon' which begins like it's avant-garde but then takes on an almost techno life force of its own. The dance vibe takes over on 'Gray-Leaved Sage'. But the dreamier 'Plants Heal' is more at the heart of an intriguing record that the deeper you enter its world the more layers of interest you find.

Hear the duo live at Servant Jazz Quarters, part of the EFG London Jazz Festival, on Tuesday

Tags: Albums and EPs

Okvsho, Orange Wine, Hip Dozer **

Lounge jazz does well on streaming services. Evidence should that be needed to wit the languid 'Rasheed' track from Orange Wine is staggeringly currently the third most streamed jazz track globally on Spotify. The recipe Swiss outfit Okvsho follow …

Published: 13 Nov 2021. Updated: 20 days.

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Lounge jazz does well on streaming services. Evidence should that be needed to wit the languid 'Rasheed' track from Orange Wine is staggeringly currently the third most streamed jazz track globally on Spotify. The recipe Swiss outfit Okvsho follow is to ladle generous usually melodic licks on top of to be fair fairly samey Rhodesian vamps pushed along pretend-moodily by muted trumpet and flute noodling modally on top and strictly corralled by pacey beats sometimes touching on a Brazilian beat say on 'Joga Bonito' although that's more an outlier track in the overall context. With players centred around the multi-instrumentalist brothers Georg and Christoph Kiss Orange Wine was released on French label Hip Dozer (no bull there) earlier in the autumn. Not a demanding listen (understatement of the day) it's harmless but very lightweight in nature ultimately. Tailor-made for an upmarket music/bar venue ambience when a DJ might play it discreetly enough to those thinking about cutting a rug dreamily later on in the evening it serves that specific function primarily. Not an album to chin stroke over for more than, oh, nanoseconds – at all. SG