February 10, 2006

The Matthew Herbert Big Band – Goodbye Swingtime

Filed under: Reviews — Rene @ 8:30 am

The Matthew Herbert Big Band - Goodbye Swingtime
I seriously had no idea of The Matthew Herbert Big Band’s music until I got their CD Goodbye Swingtime (2003). What waited for me was a very pleasant surprise.

Matthew Herbert has an early teenager experience as a keyboard player in Glenn Miller swing tribute band and since then he continued experimenting with different sounds and electronic gadgets in a context of dance music.

Album “Goodbye Swingtime” proves Matthews excellent compositional skills. For his album recordings he invited the Britain’s finest swing musicians. Then he cuts the recordings into samples and experiments with different approaches and sound processing. Amazing Dani Siciliano provided vocals for most of the tracks.

The opener “Turning Pages” begins with by some strange electronic noise and dissolves into a beautiful instrumental jazzy track with horns, bass, drums and keyboards.

Next is a very retro sounding “Everything’s Changed” with Dani Sicilliano’s vocals.

Track three ”Fiction” with gentle female vocals. Almost like a story telling dramatic staccato beat builds up into a piano accompanied melody.

“Three W’s” is an excellent track with slow electronic beat, female vocals and beautiful horns.

“Chromoshop” includes a whole array of electronic samples with a difficult almost Miles Davis-ish song structure.

I could continue like this with every single track. There is something interesting about all of them.

Herbert’s “Goodbye Swingtime” is a very fresh and modern swing sounding album and is definitely there not to be missed.

Rating: SterneSterneSterneSterneSterne

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