|Alex Hutton - Keys|
A standing ovation was not on the cards considering the start to the evening (28/11/2013) which spluttered to life with a clashing of melodies and volumes. 'Crying Wolf' nearly brought us to tears, partly because of a new synth riding on Hutton's usual keyboard arrangement, whose temperamental volume control jumped and dipped with alarming regularity. It also took some time to digest Stu Ritchie, his drumming and all of his noise toys which he produced from his magician's bag. Here's a man who juxtaposes his diminutive appearance with a larger than life sound and persona.
|Dave Whitford - Bass|
No Alex Hutton gig could be without his signature tune 'JJ' and Ritchie's drive on drums supported Hutton as he played with intensity and commitment. As an audience you get caught in the drama of the tune, it is a hurtling nose dive you just cannot pull away from. This wasn't the show stopper though. 'Shenandoah' created such a hush in the ample audience that we heard the footsteps of Dave Whitford in Alex Hutton's snowfall of notes. Hutton usually plays with an intense bow but here he leaned back and with mouth open unshackled his wrists.
|Stu Ritchie - Drums|
The synth which housed Alex Hutton's 'Flute in a box' was a hit and miss affair, but it set the mood on the atmospheric 'Robin Hood's Cave'. Its hollow call combined with Ritchie's bowing, and created a growling smear of retro emotion. It reminded us of those dark fables so keenly animated in the 1970's where children's tales weren't spoiled by a sugary coating. I am full of admiration for the Twickenham Jazz Club audience who digested both Hutton's sweet frosting and his bitter laments with equal relish.
ps. After this gig I tracked down the music for Noggin the Nog which you can download here.