Album of the Week – The Golden Age of Steam – Welcome to Bat CountryOctober 13th, 2012 by Poejazzi
Descriptive terms to avoid include: Jazzy, mood music, and the oh so dreaded, funky. The Golden Age of Steam are none of the above so please feel safe enough to read on. Now there’s nothing wrong with a little bit of funky town in your jazz fix if that’s your thing. There is also nothing wrong with jazz that provides the backdrop to your dinner party, but I’m a little more partial to the kind of jazz that feels vital, cinematic, vast. Basically Poejazzi collectively likes its jazz like you should like your date: well read. And well read The Golden Age of Steam are (as well as being exceptionally good at surrealist banter pre playing every piece if you see them live) You could call them (and I’m kind of insisting) the Radiohead of jazz because a) every time you see them play live there is a sense of stun and awe and b) they go off in unexpected tangents and yet don’t leave us afloat with no melody to lead us back to the shore if you know what I mean.
About the Author The Golden Age of Steam features the compositions of multi-reedist James Allsopp. The band includes drummer Tim Giles, James’ co-leader of the award winning quintet Fraud (BBC Jazz Award for Innovation 2008). The group is completed by Mercury Prize nominated musician and winner of the BBC Jazz Award for Rising Star 2008, Kit Downes.
The album is out on Basho Records October 15.