The Prickle (@ThePrickle) September 13, 2016
Considering the line up at King’s place on Saturday afternoon, you’d be forgiven for expecting the tried and tested Høiby-Phronesis formula.
The reality was much more refreshing, with a wonderful blend of original pieces as part of the Fellow Creatures album launch. The opening Folk Song was nicely balanced – free and open, but with splashes of structured unison. In contrast, the title track that followed had a solid groove, with more of a focus on harmonisation between the horns. Especially noticeable was the musical space crafted for every musician. The solos were never indulgent or overstated, feeling like a natural extension of each melody.
Høiby was on form, demonstrating his technical prowess, especially when playing intricate grooves interspersed with harmonics. Laura Jurd was exceptional on trumpet, with a beautiful tone and thoughtful melodies. New-comer Will Barry impressed with his solo on World of contradictions and created a tasteful interplay between piano and bass throughout. Mark Lockheart on saxophone was perhaps the most understated of the group, with a mature and refined sound and drummer Corrie Dick was a joy to watch.
Although brief, Høiby’s skills as a compère were characteristically unconventional and amusing, with topics ranging from fire drills to Theresa May in a gimp suit. His new musical direction proves he’s far from a one-trick pony and that many more great things are sure to come from this extraordinary talent.