A recording made in 2019 at Air in Hampstead and featuring a 24 piece orchestra all aged between 18 and 25 plus guests including Norma Winstone, Georgina Jackson, Josephine Davies, Shirley Smart, Laura Jurd, Issie Barratt, Nikki Iles and Yazz Ahmed.
The more adventurous and poetic the material is the more successful it becomes. So the inclusion of the more trad-like Lil Hardin and Billie Holiday pieces did not work so well given that the album comes across more as a modernistic collection than a traditional deep dive.
However highlights are fairly plentiful and certainly the luminous 'Wild Oak' featuring Nikki Iles right at the beginning stands out above all for the sensitivity of the ensemble's establishment of mood and texture and rewards frequent replay. SG
Out on 7 October