Underground experimentalists Luke Abbott, Portico Quartet’s Jack Wyllie and PVT’s Laurence Pike have been playfully connecting the dots between jazz, classical and electronic on their own. With their collaborative project Szun Waves they tastefully conjure the out-of-body spiritualism explored by legends Alice Coltrane and Sun Ra through the mingling of these genres. The cosmic sense of scale is realised with just three core elements – Pike on drums, Wyllie of sax, Abbott on modular synth. It’s how they emphasise that scale that’s most impressive.
Their unhurried, heady jams find power at the microcosmic level. On the title track, the creaks of the floor, the wheezes of the sax reed and the shuffle of sticks against the drum skin feel just as important as a clever melodic flourish. The group pull us into their space, so we can sense where they’re sitting in relation to each other. The weight of their interplay is there before they’ve even begun. Just like their contemporaries Floating Points and James Holden, the impeccably vivid mixing acts as a secret killer element.
The three other star elements are just as masterful. The synth work is expansive and alive with detail, while Pike’s skittering drums find space to colour arpeggios with shots of wild energy or a meditative air, depending on the track. Wylie’s sax is the beating heart of the album, emphasising the emotional peaks with his dynamic, unpredictable melodies. These six tracks are complex compositions, but Szun Waves write and perform with the freshness that could trick you into thinking it poured right out of their heads.
Support Loud And Quiet from £3 per month and we'll post you our next 9 magazines
As all of us are constantly reminded, it’s getting harder for independent publishers to stay in business, which applies to Loud And Quiet more now than ever, 14 years after we first started printing a magazine that we’ve always given away for free.
Having thought about the best way to support the costs of what we do (the printing and server fees, the podcast and video production costs etc.) we’d like to ask our readers who really enjoy what we do to subscribe to our next 9 issues over the next 12 months. The cheapest we can afford to do this for is a recurring payment of £3 per month for UK subscribers. If you really start to hate it you can cancel at any time. The same goes for European subscriptions (£6 per month) and the rest of the world (£8 per month).
It’s not just a donation – you’ll receive a physical copy of our magazine through your door, and some extra perks detailed on our subscribe page. Digital subscriptions are available worldwide for £15 per year. We hope you consider this a good deal and the best way to keep Loud And Quiet in your life without its content, independence or existence suffering.