Click here to [close]

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Belgian jazz rock big band madness

By Stef

Flat Earth Society - 13 (Igloo, 2013) ***

Belgium has this great band, "Flat Earth Society", self-described as the "Most Unreliable Music Since 1999", led by saxophonist Peter Vermeersch, offering music with high entertainment value, fun, exciting, zappa-esque, full of energy, with incredible arrangements, theatrical props and content, excellent musicianship and then even more fun. It almost appears that the band is the kind of thing that musicians need to get out of the pressure of real art, and just to go wild in a context of professional exuberance.

The band consists of Stefaan Blancke on trombone, Berlinde Deman on tuba, Bruno Vansina on baritone sax, Bart Maris on trumpet, Michel Mast on tenor sax, Marc Meeuwissen on trombone, Kristof Roseeuw on bass, Luc Van Lieshout on trumpet, Benjamin Boutreur on alt sax, Peter Vandenberghe on piano & keyboards, Teun Verbruggen on drums, Pierre Vervloesem on guitar, Wim Willaert on accordion & keyboard) and Tom Wouters on clarinet & vibes.

Just to get an idea of the experience, best to watch some video


MannGold De Cobre (El Negocito, 2014) ***

We alreay had this band, now we have another band, called "MannGold de Cobre", delving into the same kind of energetic and well orchestrated madness, led by guitarist Rodrigo Fuentealba, and also with Peter Vermeersch on tenor saxophone. The other band members are Karel De Backer and Matthias Standaert on drums, Bruno Coussée on bass, Philipp Weies on guitar, Dree Peremans and Peter Delannoye on trombone, Mattias De Craene on tenor saxophone, Luc Van Lieshout and Hans Bossuyt on trumpet, Kwinten Mordijck and Peter Verdonck on baritone saxophone. 

The band fuses jazz, rock, and other musical elements into one wild mix of fun and musical joy. Not high art, but highly entertaining. If Flat Earth Society has stronger influences from jazz and musical, then MannGold de Cobre has a stronger guitar-heavy rock influence.

Great entertainment and theatrical performances.