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Acapulco + Schnellertollermeier + Rasmussen & Desprez + Troyka  -  Sat Sep 30, 2017  |  06:45 pm
For this gig, part of the Newcastle Festival of Jazz & Improvised Music, Jazz North East’s international contacts come into full play, with a four band bill that taps into the cream of the French, Swiss and Danish scenes alongside one of the UK’s most charismatic trios.

There’s a touch of Norway as well, with the intense Danish saxophonist Mette Rasmussen currently based in Trondheim. Previously seen on Tyneside with the now disbanded Trio Riot and in a duo with drummer Chris Corsano, for this gig she teams up with the brilliant guitarist Julien Desprez, an increasingly influential figure on the French scene working across the spectrum from re-imagined early music through to intensely physical performances that incorporate sound art and lighting effects to trigger free improvisational flights. In fact this concert presents two faces of Julien, as he opens proceedings with a solo set under the banner ‘Acapulco’.

Trio Riot may be disbanded, but there’s a further echo of it in the presence of its Swiss drummer David Meier, now part of Schnellertollermeier, a power trio playing music without compromises: ranging from modern composition to minimal music, psychedelic and brute rock, their style defies genre boundaries with an instrumental power that bursts as much from the heart as the head.

But contemporary creativity isn’t confined to the continent, and the gig ends with London-based trio Troyka, whose brand of progressive fusion continues to evolve so that every time we hear them they deliver fresh surprises. Gateshead-born guitarist Chris Montague, keyboards maestro Kit Downes and drummer Josh Blackmore together bring the night’s extravaganza to a rousing climax.

Tickets are available from the Jazz Café (0191 222 9882), Reflex CD (0191 260 3246) or online from