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Reviewers: Tony Augarde [Editor], Steve Arloff, Nick Barnard, Pierre Giroux, Don Mather, Glyn Pursglove, George Stacy, Sam Webster, Jonathan Woolf



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RACHEL MUSSON'S SKEIN

Flight Line

F-IRE CD 37

 

 


1. It's Because of the Sky
2. White Ribbon (part 1)
3. Chairs
4. I'm Sure This Wasn't the Plan
5. Scrumping
6. Swansea Town
7. That Reminds Me of the Time
8. Irreconcilable
9. Presently/Rollin'
10. White Ribbon (part 2)

Rachel Musson - Tenor sax
Alcyona Mick - Piano
Will Collier - Bass
Josh Morrison - Drums
Javier Carmona - Drums

 

Female saxophone players are still a comparative rarity despite Humphrey Lyttelton's penchant for featuring them in his band - the excellent Jo Fooks and Karen Sharp following in the footsteps of the great Kathy Stobart. Rachel Musson hails from South Wales and trained at the Guildhall School and Trinity College. This CD marks the recording debut of her band Skein. All the compositions, bar Swansea Town, are by Musson.

The band's line-up is unusual in that there are two drummers on every track with Morrison on a conventional kit providing the underlying rhythms and the free-wheeling Carmona adding extra layers often with a Latin tinge. Musson's tone is hard-edged and buzzy, sometimes straying into squawk territory, but she has an excellent rapport with pianist Alcyona Mick who provides intelligent support and contributes some inventive solos. There are some meandering moments on some tracks but the quintet is at its best on the reflective Chairs, where Mussonplays with a softer tone,and the jaunty Irreconcilable which also includes a strong solo by bassist Collier.

A promising debut, although the impressive Alcyona Mick rather steals the show from her leader.

George Stacy



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