Jazz review from Weekend Australian Sat May 3:
LABEL: Alluvium Records
RATING: 4 stars
SYDNEY trumpeter Eamon Dilworth is a highly active musician. His quintet the Dilworths released their debut album in 2009, and then his Gypsy ska quartet Caravana Sun album had its debut in 2011, with a second album arriving last year. Between times, Dilworth has toured extensively in Europe and studied and played in the US, Australia and New Zealand, winning numerous awards in the process. Not bad for someone who has just turned 27.
Now Dilworth, together with drummer Paul Derricott, has formed a new quintet, Tiny Hearts, releasing a debut album of compositions by each band member. These pieces are described as “tales of travel, searching, thinking of the cosmos, loss and identity”.
Five of the 11 pieces are by the leader, including the opener, Brief Stint, which begins with a series of solo trumpet downward cadences, taken up by Dave Jackson’s alto as the ensemble arrives to slow things down, flatten out and then erupt into a raucous free-sounding sequence with accentuating drums.
Pianist Steve Barry’s original, Kanji, is a sumptuously pensive number carried by muted trumpet and alto with gracefully flowing piano ornamentation.
There’s a vaguely familiar lullaby-style melody to Derricott’s Big Sea Reprise, featuring wordless vocals from a trio of Elana Stone, Brian Campeau and the composer. Bassist Tom Botting wrote Balclutha, with an infectious tock-tock offbeat and stately harmonics.
Cosmontology by Jackson is a post-bop piece — a term that applies to most tracks — with a long-note theme against jabbing rhythms adding the composer’s driving solo and an imaginative, tension-building piano sequence.