Opening the evening was ALLY, a six piece jazz ensemble that blends Afro-Peruvian music and jazz to create an interesting mix of African rhythms, Latin melodies and modern jazz sensibilities. A creative music venue like Lazybones is a great space to explore an innovative blends of different musical backgrounds within a jazz framework.

The rhythm section of Stamatis Valacos on double bass, Giorgio Rojas and Steve Marin on percussion set up a great platform for the rest of the band to perform their solos and improvisations. Jonathan Cohen on piano is often part of the rhythm section but also performs solos and melodies that make a real statement and he has interesting interactions with Eamon Dilworth on trumpet and Gai Bryant on saxophones and flute .

Original compositions by Jonathan Cohen, Eamon Dilworth and Gai Bryant in South American styles such as bomba and cha cha cha featured. Eamon Dilworth’s Fibanacci was an extravagant number and the band sounded bigger than its six pieces. An un-named song early in the set featured Gai Bryant on flute and Steve Marin treated us to a cowbell solo. Jonathan Cohen’s Descarguita was a tribute to Herbie Hancock and fittingly contained an excellent saxophone solo.

After the break POLYMORPHIC ORKESTRA performed with their electro acoustic improvised sound set. This trio produces a big sound with their recorded sounds backing trumpet, vibraphone and drums.

It featured electronic music via laptops and live music featuring Lee McIver on trumpet and flugelhorn, Ed Goyer on vibraphone and Mallet Kat (a bass focused electronic percussion instrument) and Ed Rodrigues on drums. These performers are excellent musicians and I enjoyed Lee McIver’s clear and melodic trumpet and the way he produces eerie and ethereal sounds.

It would be interesting to hear POLYMORPHIC ORKESTRA perform in a large space. I could envision them as part of an art installation at Carriageworks or possibly creating a futuristic sci-fi soundtrack.

ALLY debuted at Lazybones Lounge, 294 Marrickville Road, Marrickville on Sunday April 14th in a double bill event with the POLYMORPHIC ORCHESTRA.

Featured image- The Polymorphic Orchestra.