Jason Bruer & Hammerhead + The Steve Barry Quartet: Thursday, 25th of February 2021
Jason Bruer & Hammerhead:
Having been together now for over 10 years, Jason Bruer’s powerhouse sextet Hammerhead has gained National recognition and praise through their exciting live performances. 2014 saw the release of their debut CD ‘Mozaic’ which has received widespread critical acclaim in Australia, Japan, and the UK.
The band has risen in stature considerably over the last few years. As a result, it has won feature status at prominent Jazz festivals around the Country including Manly Jazz Festival, Thredbo Jazz Festival, Capitol Jazz Project (Canberra) The Wangaratta Jazz & Blues Festival, and The Sydney Con’ International Jazz Festival. They have also done ‘sold out’ shows at Gods Cafe in Canberra and the Wollongong Conservatoire of Music. They play a ‘once a month’ residency at Lazybones which they have been doing for over 6 years.
A shift in style and line-up in 2018, saw the release of their second CD ‘Turning Point’ (2019) which contains ten original compositions by bandleader and tenor & soprano saxophonist Jason Bruer, showcasing his array of disparate influences. Whilst still congruent with the ‘hard bop’ aesthetic, Bruer’s compositions are coloured by an altogether wider compositional palette, mirroring his desire to inject more diversity into the band’s repertoire – from ‘in your face’ hard swing to a slinky waltz; from breathtaking ballads to a blues-based eulogy; from a classically informed fugue to funk and jazz-folk to odd-meter ‘urban jazz’, it’s no surprise the band has been selling out gigs all over Sydney.
Jason Bruer – tenor & soprano sax, Andrew Robertson – alto sax & flute, Cam’ McAllister – trumpet, Greg Coffin – piano, Alex Hirlian – drums, Dave Quinn – double bass.
“If you want to hear how good Australian Jazz has become, give a listen to ‘Turning Point’, the latest CD by Jason Bruer’s Hammerhead, an exceptional recording that ticks all the right boxes”. – Mike Nock
“Melodies that you can hold onto, grooves that get under your skin, and an electricity that reminds you of first listening to jazz as a teenager” – Jasmine Crittenden – musicaustralia.org.au
“The rich counterpoint created within the horn and rhythm sections, the diversity of styles within the jazz spectrum and the inordinately high quality of arranging and individual and collective playing brings to mind those Oz champions of yore, “Ten Part Invention” – Tony Hillier – Rhythm Magazine
The Steve Barry Quartet:
Steve Barry’s recent musical projects are manifold and diverse, from a collaboration with classical chamber group Ensemble Offspring to a new trio based around the Hammond organ. Born from after-class jam sessions at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music where Barry is a lecturer, this quartet features three of Sydney’s finest emerging jazz talents and hot-off-the-press original music.
Steve Barry – piano, Ben Lerner – alto saxophone, Nick Jansen – bass, George Greenhill – drums.
“…dazzling in his harmonic adventurousness, melodic resourcefulness, switchback rhythmic ideas, and non-bombastic sense of drama.” – Sydney Morning Herald
“…one of Australia’s most inventive and accomplished composer/improvisers.” – Limelight Magazine