Kaleidoscope — GEST8

GEST8

(Tall Poppies)

AS its name suggests, GEST8 is about slow development and infinite possibilities. Co-led by composers Tony Gorman and Sandy Evans (saxophones), the ensemble of eight lead musicians incorporates influences as diverse as Japanese, Korean and circus music and free improvisation.

Best experienced live, as in the closing performance at the 2008 Wangaratta Festival of Jazz, this music — described by Paul Grabowsky as reflecting jazz as a process — can surprise, arrest and is always engrossing.

Satsuki Odamura on the ancient Japanese koto and bass koto adds a distinctive dimension, as does Greg White on computer, particularly on Platform, which is eerily reminiscent of Hitchcock’s The Birds.

Standout tracks are Gorman’s mesmerising Lambent and Evans’s thoughtful Inner Space, the upbeat, then frenetic The Emperor’s Old Clothes and whimsical A Shower of Sunbeams.

In short: Ever-changing musical shapes and colours.

ROGER MITCHELL

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