Live review: Tom Ollendorff trio at the Vortex

Catching the last set of the Tom Ollendorff trio at the Vortex last night as the guitarist continues with trio dates touring A Song For You the striking aspect of Ollendorff's approach is partly to soft-sing to and around his virtuosic guitar …

Published: 28 May 2021. Updated: 3 months.

Catching the last set of the Tom Ollendorff trio at the Vortex last night as the guitarist continues with trio dates touring A Song For You the striking aspect of Ollendorff's approach is partly to soft-sing to and around his virtuosic guitar lines. The London-based guitarist's debut, both Irish-born Conor Chaplin on double bass and French drummer Marc Michel, a matador presence (who reminded me stylistically of Tingvall trio drummer Jürgen Spiegel) from the album were present for this intimate Dalston appearance.

'Not in These Days' inspired by poet Jane Tyson Clement and the Charlie Parker rarity 'Bongo Beep' resounded appealingly in the blend of material. Ollendorf's sound is unusual, his improvisations grounded in ferociously detailed bebop intricacy that is overlaid by a veneer of dreamy introspection that the soft amplification treatment rounds off almost to the point of lontano. Album track Ollendorff original 'XY' was the pick of the set closely followed by the atmospheric 'Aare' named after a river that flows through Bern. While Chaplin certainly stole the show as the motor of the ensemble, his robustness of purpose and a darting momentum to his direction driving the sound forward, Ollendorff's quietly determined if cautious approach increasingly made sense the further into his dream world a listener travels buoyed by the trio's persuasive sense of momentum. SG. Tom Ollendorff, top

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Turning 50 today Robert Mitchell is to mark the milestone with summertime shows

Pianist Robert Mitchell is 50 today and marks the milestone releasing news of appearances this summer at Ronnie Scott's featuring two of his bands Epiphany 3 and True Think plus guests playing to two separate houses. With the Epiphany 3 (Mitchell, …

Published: 28 May 2021. Updated: 3 months.

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Pianist Robert Mitchell is 50 today and marks the milestone releasing news of appearances this summer at Ronnie Scott's featuring two of his bands Epiphany 3 and True Think plus guests playing to two separate houses.

With the Epiphany 3 (Mitchell, bassist Tom Mason and drummer Saleem Raman), is poet and percussionist Eugene Skeef who are to play material from 2017's A Vigil For Justice. A Vigil For Peace and 2018 EP Epiphany plus the piece 'Good Trouble, Necessary Trouble: A John Lewis tribute.'

With True Think (Mitchell, Mason, Raman, Alice Zawadzki, Zayn Mohammed) the guest is Cuban trumpeter Yelfris Valdés.

More details of the 7 August Ronnie's appearance

Robert Mitchell, top. Photo: via Mo'Connections