GoGo Penguin at City Recital Hall

Last night I finally got to see GoGo Penguin, a band from Manchester I've been following for 10 years. I've been hanging out to see them live the whole time. I love their music.

I dragged along my mate Gab who's more of a jazz head than me, particularly keen on the freer end of jazz and a bunch of the 70s smoother stuff. He was commenting that there were periods when the music seemed to be repeating without someone taking the lead.

Our conclusion is that this is techno music played on jazz instrumentation, not a more jazz sensibility. There were solos but the structure of the songs is much more like techno: big build up of tension followed by dramatic release ("the drop") with all the instruments working together to that end.

A number of the tracks incorporate complicated polyrhythms with Chris Illingworth playing two and sometimes (with delays and loops) three parts while Nick Blacka shreds like his life depends on it with the double bass. Incredible complexity and discipline.

Check out some videos of this band. They're awesome.

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