Theo May's Odd Unit, Alive in the Forest of Odd, Discus Music ***1/2

Violinist Theo May says that his original music for Odd Unit is ''a rich weave of the jazz, folk and classical music which has always surrounded and inspired me'' so it's a pretty broad brushstroke. What's here comes over to these ears more folk …

Published: 10 Jan 2024. Updated: 48 days.

Violinist Theo May says that his original music for Odd Unit is ''a rich weave of the jazz, folk and classical music which has always surrounded and inspired me'' so it's a pretty broad brushstroke. What's here comes over to these ears more folk than anything but pretty appealing it is too - there's plenty of feverish expression and a feeling of letting go on a piece such as the 'Joy of Nine'. With May are bass clarinettist Gustavo Clayton Marucci, who proves particularly effective on 'Under the Earth', pianist William Bracken, bassist Ali Watson and drummer Alex Temple Heald. Highlights include May's beautiful soloing on 'The Ballad of Acceptance.' The album is launched with a gig tonight at the Kings Arms in Malmesbury

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Sarah Gillespie returns with a new album accompanied by live dates next month

Here's the murder ballad and Shakespeare inspired 'Molly of the Salt Sea' from singer songwriter Sarah Gillespie's latest album Half Cut due out on the Pastiche label on 9 February. There's a second single from the album due out later this week. …

Published: 10 Jan 2024. Updated: 16 days.

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Here's the murder ballad and Shakespeare inspired 'Molly of the Salt Sea' from singer songwriter Sarah Gillespie's latest album Half Cut due out on the Pastiche label on 9 February. There's a second single from the album due out later this week. Sarah explores her American roots on the album which was partly composed during lockdown and recorded in Berlin. She has a top band with her - Kit Downes (on piano + organ), James Maddren (drums) Tom Cawley (harpsichord + piano), Conor Chaplin (bass) and Chris Montague (mandolin + guitar) who also co-wrote four songs on the album with Gillespie. Shows coming up include Pizza Express Jazz Club, London (1 February) and The Hub at St Mary's, Lichfield on 23 Feb.